Squad news


09 Mar 2017
Depor rescued a point with a late penalty, not a good game, but a deserved reward for the side that had the most and the better opportunities.

Pepe Mel presented the expected 4-2-3-1 formation. German Lux was the goalkeeper, Juanfran Moreno covered the right side in defence, Luisinho performed on the left, then Sidnei Rechel and Alejandro Arribas were the centre-backs.

Celso Borges and Pedro Mosquera were the centre midfielders, Carles Gil attacked from the right wing, Fayçal Fajr performed on the left, Emre Çolak was the playmaker and Florin Andone was the centre forward.

At Real Betis, Víctor Sánchez surprised with a defensive 5-4-1 formation. Rubén Castro was benched and Toni Sanabria was the lonely attacker.  Darko Brašanac and, Ryan Donk were also novelties at midfield.

First part with two segments clearly differentiated; within the first thirty minutes Betis were much better and only their lack of ideas prevented to see more scoring chances, later Depor improved and Andone and Juanfran had clear scoring opportunities. 

The game started with no one controlling the actions, both sides were playing with long passes, it didn’t work for Depor and for Betis it gave a lot of problems to the defence, mainly to Juanfran, who didn’t look fine before the runs of Donk.

The first approximation was for Betis, in a quick play Brašanac drilled the ball from the left and Sanabria was close to collect the cross, but Arribas cleared the danger (8’). Two minutes later Brašanac appeared again, this time collecting a drilling pass inside the area, but his low shot was blocked by Lux.

At this point it was clear that Betis was the best team on the pitch, Depor were disoriented and the Andalusians weren’t having too many problems at the moment of stepping into the rival’s side of the pitch. The Galicians improved in the next minutes, though without creating a clear opportunity.

Betis were still well placed, but they neither created clear chances. Their main problem is that their fluid passing game was ending in crosses that never found a receiver, they only looked dangerous at the moment of finding the back of the defenders, but that only occurred in a few opportunities.

Then the game changed. Depor’s first approximation came until minute 30, and it was a direct free-kick in which Mosquera sent the ball out. Five minutes later Juanfran missed the target after collecting a loose ball at the edge of the area.

At this point the Galicians were finding the ball at ease, this since the pressure of Betis was now lower, it was then that Depor had their best opportunities. At minute 42, Çolak drilled the ball into the area, Andone tried to release a short cross and the deflection hit the near post, two minutes later Juanfran found a loose ball at the edge of the area and his strong shot was  deflected over the bar by visiting goalie Antonio Adán.

Weird second half, it was weird as at times the actions were boring, and suddenly there was excitement with both sides having clear chances to score. Depor were close to lose for the first time with Pepe Mel, but a late penalty saved a point though Depot deserved more.

The final part started with Andone missing the ball after a good cross by Luisinho (48’). The pace was low within the first ten minutes, but Depor were better placed compared to the first part. At minute 55, Çolak got the ball at the left wing and ran towards the edge of the area and his strong shot was deflected by Adán.

Betis were felling before the local pressure and Deportivo were finding the ball at midfield. The locals were looking closer to score, but then an injury changed the picture. Sidnei fell down and had to be replaced by Albentosa.

The injury affected the local team and only a few minutes later Betis found the goal, it was a corner-kick in which Cristiano Piccini found the ball at the far post, his shot hit Borges and luckily went in.  Deportivo were in disadvantage for the first time since the arrival of Pepe Mel and the coach reacted switching the draw. Joselu replaced Fajr and Depor were now playing with a 4-4-2 figure.

Then a game that was boring turned to be exciting, because Depor had several clear chances to score, while Betis were locked at the back, but also had a couple of big opportunities to kill the game.  So, the public suffered and enjoyed at the same time.

Ceballos should have scored after a combination with Ruben Pardo, but he incredibly missed the target (77’). The Andalusians were going to pay the price for this miss, also for the lack of ambition by Víctor Sánchez, who didn’t want to put either Joaquín or Rubén Castro preferring to fill the field with midfielders and defenders.

Then Depor made a final push, Ola John replaced Carles Gil, Adán saved a scissors-kick attempt by Joselu (78’), the same Joselu missed the target (81’) and the low attempt by Arribas was blocked by Betis’ goalie (83’). Andone was close to score at the end after finding a cross from Juanfran, but his shot from the box only hit the net by the outside (89´).

And Depor were going to find a deserved equalizer, and it was thanks to a polemic decision by referee Álvarez Izquierdo, who whistled a penalty after Celso Borges jumped for the ball alongside Pezella. There was no foul in this action as both men jumped for the ball, but the call was made.

This time Mel had ordered before the game that Borges was going to take the penalties and the midfielder didn’t miss from the spot. Betis even had the chance to score the winner after Albentosa committed a tough foul at the edge of the area, but substitute Álex Martínez sent the ball out (90+4’)

Dramatic game for how things ended. Betis were much better at the beginning, later Deportivo improved and had more chances to score, but the Andalusians scored after Sidnei got injured and the local harassment found a reward through a late and polemic penalty.

Depor are now tied in points with CD Leganés lying five points above demotion. The next game is the visit of FC Barcelona to the Riazor (Sunday, 16h15 CET), and Depor are paying a high price as both Andone and Mosquera picked a fifth yellow card and are out of the game, also Sidnei, who left the field injured.

Deportivo: (4-2-3-1) Lux – Juanfran, Arribas, Sidnei (Albentosa 67’), Luisinho – Borges, Mosquera – Carles Gil (Ola John 80’), Çolak, Fajr (Joselu 74’) – Andone.
Real Betis: (5-4-1) Adán – Piccini, Mandi, Pezella, Tosca, Durmisi – Brašanac (Rafa Navarro 85’), Donk (Petros 62’), Pardo (Álex Martínez 81’), Ceballos - Sanabria.
Goals: 0-1: (70’) Piccini, 1-1: (90+2’) Borges
Referee: Alfonso Álvarez Izquierdo. He showed yellow card to Carles Gil (20’), Andone (32’), Donk (35’), Ruben Pardo (40’), Ceballos (51’), Mosquera (85’), Adán (87’), Mandi (90+2’), Pezzella (90+2’), Albentosa (90+3’) & Álex Martínez (90+4’)
Venue: Riazor (21,589)
Other statistics: Ball possession (55% - 45%); Attempts to score (11 – 4); Total shots (15 - 5); Shots on target (5- 3); Saves by the keepers (2 - 4); Corner-kicks (6 - 4); Offsides (1 - 2); Fouls committed (22 - 17); Passing accuracy (79% - 76%)



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