Squad news


19 Mar 2017
Deportivo want to continue climbing positions and Pepe Mel is thinking in giving a new opportunity to Álex and Joselu. The rival in the derby arrives after qualifying to the quarterfinals in the Europa League.

Referee: Juan Martínez Munuera
Kick-off: 18h30 CET (Riazor)

RC Celta are having a much better season than Deportivo, Los Celestes reached the quarterfinals in the Europa League and have spent more time closer to Europe than to relegation, but currently they are in a bump after only adding two of the last twelve points in dispute.

Meanwhile, Deportivo were in a big problem after been only one point above demotion, but then new coach Pepe Mel arrived and things radically changed, now Los Coruñeses are eight points above the pit after adding eight of the last twelve points in dispute. So, the game is a clash of two sides that are living a very different moment to what their currently positions at the standings are saying.

This is the 115th edition of the Galician derby playing for a league competition; the series is very equal with Depor having 42 victories, while Celta have 45. Deportivo have won four of the last nine derbies; also, they have won eight of the last twelve derbies played at the Riazor.

This derby has a double sense of consolidation for Deportivo, in the first place it could help up to keep or even increase the difference with the drop zone, an eight-point gap that, with only ten matchdays remaining after the game, should be the first step to secure the permanence. At the same time, it could help to consolidate the starting role of some players like Álex Bergantiños and Joselu.

And it’s that Mel has tested a lineup with several of the starters that beat FC Barcelona on the week before, starting with Álex and Joselu. The Madrilenian coach tested in improvising in the playmaker’s role as he allowed the entry of Pedro Mosquera at midfield pushing Celso Borges to perform behind the solo striker. But later, in the press conference, he admitted that he doesn’t like to play like this and that he is still analyzing the possibility to play with two strikers, which in the end seems like the most probable thing.

Team news: Centre-back Sidnei Rechel didn’t recover in time and is the only player at the injury room. Left-back Fernando Navarro is suspended. Guilherme is back after overcoming his ankle injury, Andone and Pedro Mosquera return from suspension, while the players out for tactical reasons are Marlos Moreno and Ola John.

Man to watch: Striker Joselu. Pepe Mel is so happy with his sacrifice against FC Barcelona that the coach is open to switch the draw into a 4-4-2, this in order to allow the continuity of Joselu playing alongside Andone. The Galician attacker is used to have his better performances in big games, the proof is his three goals playing against Real Madrid and FC Barcelona.

Picked players: (19) Tytoń, Lux, Roef (goalkeepers); Laure, Juanfran, Arribas, Albentosa, Luisinho, (defenders); Álex Bergantiños, Borges, Fajr, Çolak, Pedro Mosquera, Guilherme, Carles Gil, Kakuta, Bruno Gama (midfielders); Joselu & Andone (attackers).

Predicted lineup: (4-4-2) Lux – Juanfran, Arribas, Sidnei, Luisinho – Bruno Gama, Pedro Mosquera, Álex Bergantiños, Fajr – Joselu, Andone.

The fans in Vigo are really dreaming with the Europa League, the team reached the quarterfinals for the first time in a decade and it’s slowly becoming into the main goal for a side that’s already thirteen points below the European zone in liga. For this reason, coach Eduardo Berizzo has been playing with alternative teams in the local competition while he reserves the best men for the continental scenario.

But the Galician derby is a different thing, first for what it means emotionally and later because there’s a break on next week, so an extra effort before the pause won’t affect the European plans, though the Argentine coach should also consider that up to eight men will be playing with their national teams during next weekend.

Team news: Centre midfielder Marcelo Díaz (knee sprain) and goalkeeper Rubén Blanco (thigh) are the only players out for the derby. Berizzo picked the 23 men that were available, including Celta B goalie Iván Villar.

Man to watch: Attacker Iago Aspas. The recently picked by Spain’s national team player is living a sweet season, this after scoring fourteen goals and providing three assists. He never shone at the Riazor and want to clear the ghost of his expulsion two seasons ago, he scored two of the last three goals of Celta in la liga, later Los Celestes spent two matchdays scoreless.

Picked players: (23) Sergio Álvarez, Iván Villar (goalkeepers); Hugo Mallo, Fontás, Pape, Lemos, Jonny, Sergi Gómez, Planas, Cabral (defenders); Radoja, Bongonda, Pablo Hernández, Jozabed, Hjulsager, Wass, Señé, Roncaglia, Pione Sisto (midfielders); Guidetti, Beauvue, Iago Aspas & Giuseppe Rossi (attackers)

Predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Sergio Álvarez – Hugo Mallo, Cabral, Fontás, Jonny – Wass, Radoja – Aspas, Hernández, Sisto – Guidetti.



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