Competition news


22 Aug 2006
La Liga season starts this weekend. will present during the next four days an interesting analysis about the twenty clubs that will compete in the new season. We start today with the most misunderstood figures in the world of football: the coaches.

Nine of the twenty clubs in Primera have changed the coach for the 2006/2007 liga season: Javier Aguirre (Atl?©tico Madrid), F?©lix Sarriugarte (Athletic Bilbao), Javier Irureta (Betis), Ernesto Valverde (RCD Espanyol), L??pez Caro (Levante), Ziganda (Osasuna), Miguel ?ngel Portugal (Racing Santander), Fabio Capello (Real Madrid) and V?­ctor Fern??ndez (Zaragoza).

Meanwhile, the other eleven clubs are trusting once again in the men that directed the teams at the end of the past campaign: Frank Rijkaard (Barcelona), Fernando V??zquez (Celta), Joaqu?­n Caparr??s (Deportivo), Bernd Schuster (Getafe), Gregorio Manzano (Mallorca), Luis Angel C?©sar (Nastic), Jos?© Mari Bakero (Real Sociedad), Marcelino (Recreativo), Juande Ramos (Sevilla), Quique S??nchez Flores (Valencia) and Manuel Pellegrini (Villarreal).

One interesting fact is that 15 of the 20 coaches are Spaniards, a tendency that has been followed by la liga clubs during the last seasons. The only foreign coaches are: Javier Aguirre (Atl?©tico Madrid), Fabio Capello (Real Madrid), Frank Rijkaard (Barcelona), Bernd Schuster (Getafe) and Manuel Pellegrini (Villarreal).

Another tendency is to hire a coach with experience in Primera. But there's always an exception. F?©lix Sarriugarte (Athletic Bilbao), Ziganda (Osasuna), Miguel ?ngel Portugal (Racing Santander), Luis Angel C?©sar (Nastic) and Marcelino (Recreativo) are the five coaches that will make their debut in a first division league.

The other side of the story has a familiar face: Javier Irureta. The Basque coach is the most experienced man in la liga with 591 games in Primera (Logro?±es, Oviedo, Athletic, Racing, Real Sociedad, Celta and Deportivo). Another experienced trainer is Fabio Capello. He has a very large curriculum in Italy and also in European competitions, but he only has 42 games as a Primera coach (Real Madrid, season 1996/1997).

An interesting curiosity is the number of consecutive seasons that the coaches have in their clubs. Far and away are the times in which Irureta accumulated seven straight seasons in Deportivo. Right now Frank Rijkaard is the one with the better record. The Dutch coach will direct Barcelona for the fourth season in a row, while Manuel Pellegrini is starting his third campaign with Villarreal.

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