Competition news


05 Apr 2017
Important game at the Riazor as Granada CF play one of its last chances to survive in la liga; Pepe Mel is returning to the 4-2-3-1 planning five changes at the lineup.

Referee: Carlos Del Cerro Grande
Kick-off: 20h30 CET (Riazor)

Granada CF and Málaga CF are the only two teams that haven’t won yet on the road during this liga season, Los Rojiblancos have only picked three draws after fifteen visits, they are also the second worst defence in the league after leaking 62 goals, mark only above CA Osasuna (69). These stats perfectly explain why they are currently seating eight points below the safety.

But neither Deportivo are having a good season at home, the defeat in the Galician derby meant the fifth loss at the Riazor during this course. The Galicians have only picked 19 points after 14 home meetings, mark only above Granada CF (16), CD Leganés (14), Sporting Gijón (14) and CA Osasuna (5).

Granada CF and Deportivo have barely coincided in the same league during the past three decades, but the Andalusians have a pretty good record playing at the Riazor, this after clinching three wins and three draws in their last six visits to A Coruña. The last home win for Depor over the Andalusians took place during the Segunda season 1979/80 (1.0, goal scored by Antonio Cantudo).

Pepe Mel has directed Deportivo in six league meetings and always used a different scheme, from the double presence of left-backs used at Sporting Gijón to the trivote chose before RC Celta, now he is switching again as the suspension of Joselu is forcing to abandon the 4-4-2 figure.

Now Mel is returning to the 4-2-3-1 scheme and is making five changes compared to the team that lost before Valencia CF. Emre Çolak will be the playmaker, while Marlos Moreno is set to return to the starting formation for the first time in three months, this time performing on the left wing. Celso Borges returns and replaces Álex at midfield, while Arribas and Luisinho recover a spot in defence.

Team news: Centre midfielder Pedro Mosquera joined the team during the week, but didn’t receive the medical okay to play, so he stays at the injury room together with winger Gaël Kakuta. Left-back Fernando Navarro is a last-minute casualty due to a muscle problem. Striker Joselu picked a fifth yellow card in the game with Valencia CF and is suspended.

Man to watch: Attacker Marlos Moreno. Perhaps his last chance to shine at Depor, disappointing season for the Colombian, the circumstances weren’t favourable to him as he arrived late and had big problems to adapt to the pace of European football. The 20-year-old attacker has only made sixteen appearances on the season (fourteen in liga and twice in Copa), the last time he was a starter was against Villarreal CF (January 14), since that day he has only played 37 minutes, but Mel believes he is one of the two players with the needed skills to open the gaps on the field (the other is Kakuta according to the coach).

Picked players: (19) Tytoń, Lux, Roef (goalkeepers); Laure, Juanfran, Arribas, Sidnei, Albentosa, Luisinho (defenders); Álex Bergantiños, Borges, Fajr, Çolak, Guilherme, Carles Gil, Ola John, Bruno Gama (midfielders); Andone & Marlos Moreno (attackers).

Predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Lux – Juanfran, Arribas, Sidnei, Luisinho – Borges, Guilherme – Carles Gil, Çolak, Marlos Moreno - Andone.

Pessimism is surrounding Granada CF in a terrible season in which they already are eight points behind safety with only nine games remaining, but if something can mean a last hope is a victory against a direct rival, and this game has a double meaning, first because it could be useful to cut the difference to five points and also it would mean to win a possible tie-breaker with Depor.

So, despite the message transmitted from the club is that they are already thinking of next season -they fired the sporting director in February and the officials are already talking of making a team based in Spanish players- the Andalusians know that a defeat in this game is certifying the demotion, while a victory would significantly increase the surviving chances.

Team news: Striker Adrián Ramos is a last-minute casualty as he isn’t totally fit to play, while centre-backs David Lombán and Gastón Silva are out for tactical reasons. Midfielder Mehdi Carcela is out with a muscle problem, while Nigerian Uche Agbo is suspended after been sent off against FC Barcelona.

Man to watch: Attacker Artem Kravets, with Ramos out of the game, the responsibility in attack is for the Ukrainian. He is one of the top-scorers at the team, but only one of his five goals came in 2017, it was for the home game with Granada CF (1-1, January 15).

Picked players: (19) Ochoa, Rui Silva (goalkeepers); Franck Tabanou, Saunier, Foulquier, Héctor Hernández, Ingason, Rubén Vezo, Pervis Estupiñán, Martin Hongla (defenders); Samper, Wakaso, Jérémie Boga, Omer Atzili, Cuenca, Angban (midfielders); Andreas Pereira, Ezequiel Ponce & Artem Kravets (attackers)

Predicted lineup: (3-4-3) Ochoa – Ingason, Saunier, Vezo – Foulquier, Wakaso, Angban, Héctor – Boga, Kravets, Pereira.



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