Squad news


12 Mar 2016
Depor visit the Calderón without Lucas and in the middle of a negative streak. The rival is not reserving anything despite playing on Tuesday for the Champions League.

Atlético Madrid are establishing defensive marks in la liga, after 28 games they have only allowed 12 goals, something that has never happened before. Besides, they are currently the best defence among the big leagues in Europe, above Bayern Munich (13 goals in 25 Bundesliga games) and Juventus (15 goals in 28 Serie A matches).

Meanwhile, Depor have allowed goals in all the 11 league games disputed in 2016; for this reason they are the fourth worst defence in the new year with 23 goals allowed, only above the marks of RC Celta (28), RCD Espanyol (26) and Sporting Gijón (25).

And there’s more negative stats for Depor, because Los Blanquiazules have lost in their last nine visits to the Calderón stadium ending scoreless in seven opportunities. The last success visiting Atlético was for the season of the championship, 1999/2000, 1-3 with goals scored by Makaay (2) and Víctor Sánchez, who now sits at Deportivo’s bench.

Despite the latest results, Deportivo continue to be one of the teams that are creating more opportunities to score. The Galicians are seventh in la liga in terms of shots per match (12.3) and sixth regarding shots on target per match (4.3), but the problem is that the Blanquiazul team isn't converting those chances into goals.

With 34 goals in favour, it means that Deportivo needed 10.12 shots in order to score a goal; it’s the 8th highest average in la liga, only above clubs struggling to survive like Granada CF (11.64) and Levante UD (12.19). And if the team is becoming weaker in defence, then it is the perfect formula that leads to the current negative streak.

The same Víctor Sánchez recognizes the problem, as he told in an interview conceded to la liga, ”The team is playing fine, dominating the games, it is creating a lot of opportunities and it has been able to force the rival to not have too many chances. What happens is that the effectiveness is what prevails.”

To make things worse the best scorer at Depor, Lucas Pérez, didn’t recover in time and is out of the game at the Calderón with a thigh problem. So, the starter will be Oriol Riera, who has only scored one goal after completing 20 shots in 14 presentations.

Lucas is not the only normal starter out of the game due to injury reasons. Juanfran Moreno was left out too for precaution after picking a Soleus injury. Both players trained at the Riazor on Friday, but the coaching staff prefers to rest them. Luisinho is a last-minute casualty after picking a knee knock on Friday. So, the list of men at the injury room is increased to six as they join Fabricio Agosto, Juan Dominguez and Sidnei Rechel.

Víctor will keep the 4-3-3 draw, though there are novelties due to the casualties. German Lux is the starting goalkeeper, Laureano Sanabria ‘Laure‘ returns and covers the right-back position. Fernando Navarro will keep playing as a centre-back alongside Alejandro Arribas, then Manuel Pablo enters and covers the left sector. The Canarian veteran has only played 26 minutes in liga (1-4 at Athletic Club) 

Celso Borges, Álex Bergantiños and Pedro Mosquera are the centre midfielders. Fede Cartabia enters the formation and performs on the right wing after his great game against Málaga CF, Luis Alberto performs on the left wing and Riera is the centre forward.

In order to cover the casualties, Róber from Fabril was picked for the game; therefore the lad will miss the game Vs. CD Barco as it is played on the same day. Jonathan Rodriguez returns into the roster after been out in the last two games, so there are no players out for tactical reasons

List of picked players (19): Lux, Manu, Pletikosa (goalkeepers); Manuel Pablo, Laure, Lopo, Arribas, Róber, Navarro (defenders); Álex Bergantiños, Celso Borges, Mosquera, Cartabia, Cani, Jonás Gutiérrez, Fayçal Fajr (midfielders); Oriol Riera, Jonathan Rodriguez & Luis Alberto (attackers)

There’s a general consensus that Atlético are among the top two positions for its strong defence (the best ever in Spain at this height of the tournament). It is a facet in which they feel pretty comfortable and without the need to score a lot of goals. And it’s that in only four games on this league season the Madrilenians scored three goals, curiously they are coming from back-to-back games scoring three times (against Real Sociedad and Valencia CF). So, the general impression is a team that defends strongly and that only scores a few goals.

However that picture might be misleading, because Los Colchoneros remain as a pretty strong offensive team. They might be far from the large number of goals scored by both FC Barcelona and Real Madrid, but their 42 goals represent the 4th best mark in la liga, besides they are the third team with more shots per match (12.7), only behind Real Madrid (19.3) and FC Barcelona (15.9).

Also to notice that they have a goal scorer like Antoine Griezmann, the Frenchman is together with Depor’s Lucas the 8th best scorer at Primera División with 15 goals added to his tally, though he has played two more matches than Depor’s marksman.

Despite the imminent clash in Champions League before PSV Eindhoven, coach Diego Simeone is preparing a strong squad for Saturday. It is a 4-4-2 figure with Slovenian Jan Oblak protecting the goal. Juanfran Torres covers the right side of the defence, ex-Depor Filipe Luis performs at the left, then the centre-backs are Uruguayan Diego Godín and José Maria Giménez.

Koke Resurección and Gabi Fernández are the centre midfielders, Belgian Yannick Carrasco attacks from the right wing, Saúl Ñíguez does it from the left, then Luciano Vietto joins Griezmann in attack.

Argentine Vietto has lived a hard time adapting to the team after only netting one goal on the league season, against Valencia CF he was criticized after wasting some clear chances. Better have been the comments for ex-Rayo Saúl, who already scored three times, and for Belgian Carrasco, who already netter four goals.

List of picked players (19): (1/2): Moyá, Oblak (goalkeepers); Godín, Filipe Luis, Gámez, Lucas Hernández, Juanfran Torres, Giménez (defenders); Koke, Kranevitter. Óliver, Augusto Fernández, Gabi, Saúl Ñíguez, Carrasco, Thomas (midfielders); Griezmann, Correa & Vietto (attackers)

Atlético: (4-4-2) Oblak – Juanfran, Giménez, Godín, Filipe Luis – Carrasco, Koke, Gabi, Ñíguez – Vietto, Griezmann.
Deportivo: (4-3-3) Lux – Laure, Navarro, Arribas, Manuel Pablo – Álex Bergantiños, Mosquera, Borges – Cartabia, Oriol Riera, Luis Alberto.
Referee: Mario Melero López
Kick-off: 20h30 CET (Vicente Calderón stadium)
Head-to-head Vs. Atlético: 26 wins for Depor, 19 draws, 45 wins for Atletico (Primera & Segunda)
Record in Madrid: 5 wins for Depor, 6 draws, 34 wins for Atletico (Primera & Segunda)



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