Squad news


11 Sep 2016
Garitano is ready to play with two attackers after the exit of Lucas Pérez. Athletic lost the first two games and arrives as the Primera club with more academy players at the first team.

Referee: Xavier Estrada Fernández
Kick-off: 20h30 CET (Riazor)

Deportivo have only lost two of the last fourteen liga matches against Athletic Club. The Basques have been only able to pick two draws from their last seven visits to the Riazor. The last time they achieved the three points in A Coruña was for the season 2006/07 (0-2).

Athletic had a poor start in la liga after losing the first two games, but it isn’t something strange for them; in two of the last four tournaments they also started losing the first two matches. Last season they overcame the situation to end among the first six places.

Meanwhile, Depor are trying to start the tournament with three straight matches without suffering a defeat. They conquered the same thing on last season, they are also trying to add back-to-back wins at the Riazor for the first time since December 2014/January 2015; at the time Depor conquered straight home victories against Elche CF and Athletic Club (1-0 both wins, matchdays 15 & 17 season 2014/15).

Second game without Lucas Pérez and first after the marksman was transferred to Arsenal FC. And in coach Gaizka Garitano is more worried for the rival than to find another reference in attack, for this reason he has been testing a novel 3-5-2 figure with three centre-backs and with Luisinho and Juanfran Moreno acting as full-backs. The true is that the scheme was tested during the pre-season and is considered as the alternative to the traditional 4-2-3-1.

Team news: Winger Bruno Gama completed the full session on Saturday, but wasn’t picked for the game. The other player at the injury room is left-back Fernando Navarro. Midfielder Álex Bergantiños is out for tactical reasons, while Joselu and Marlos Moreno were picked for the first time. It’s surprising in the case of the Colombian after Garitano was upset for his departure during the international break.

Man to watch: Striker Joselu. The Galician attacker arrived on deadline day and now he’s going directly into the starting eleven. His last official game was on May (2-1 win of Stoke City over West Ham -he played 74 minutes)

Picked players: (18) Lux, Tytoń (goalkeepers); Laure, Juanfran, Sidnei, Arribas, Albentosa, Luisinho (defenders); Borges, Pedro Mosquera, Çolak, Fajr, Guilherme, Carles Gil (midfielders); Borja Valle, Joselu, Marlos Moreno & Florin Andone (attackers).

Predicted lineup: (3-5-2) Lux –Albentosa, Arribas, Sidnei – Juanfran, Borges, Mosquera, Fajr, Luisinho – Andone, Joselu.

Athletic Club will compete in three competitions on this season and is the only team at Primera that didn’t make signings during the summer window. It sounds terrible for any side, but not for the Basques, who are used to rely in their strong academy. Last season Athletic B played at Segunda and for this campaign three players have been promoted: left-back Enric Saborit, centre-back Yeray Álvarez and centre midfielder Mikel Vesga. Also, they recovered goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, who was loaned at Real Valladolid. 20 of the 25 players at the first team are coming from their academy, which represents the highest number in the league.

Team news: No injury concerns for coach Ernesto Valverde. Defender/midfielder Mikel San José has surpassed the back problem that didn’t’ allow him to play against FC Barcelona, while defender Eneko Bóveda (knock) and midfielder Mikel Rico (knee) will be available too.

Man to watch: Striker Aritz Aduriz. The Basques have only scored one goal so far, and the veteran striker is the one that should increase the tally. Last season he scored 20 of the 58 goals of Athletic in liga. Besides, he already netted seven goals before Depor, including a hat-trick on last season’s 4-1 win at San Mamés (March 02, 2016).

Picked players: List to be released until Saturday (the team trains at Lezama in the afternoon and flies to A Coruña hours before the match).

Predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Iraizoz – De Marcos, Bóveda, Laporte, Balenziaga – Beñat, San José – Williams, Raúl García, Susaeta – Aduriz.



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