Competition news


10 Sep 2017
Pepe Mel implements the 4-4-2 as Adrián and Bruno Gama enter the starting formation. Real Sociedad search for bigger goals based in the continuity of the team from last season.

Referee: José Luis Munuera Montero
Kick-off: 12h00CET (Riazor)

Real Sociedad arrive to the Riazor as the leader of la liga after winning its first two games on the season, it might look too premature to emphasize the statistic, but the Basques have spent more than a decade without adding consecutive wins at the start of a league tournament; more in specific the last time they won the first two games at Primera was for the campaign 2002/03, and in that opportunity they ended as the runners-up behind Real Madrid.

Meanwhile, Deportivo have only added one point after two matchdays. Los Blanquiazules have suffered to clinch the permanence in recent seasons, but always lived solid starts that included a win within the first three matchdays. On this century, the only opportunity in which Depor failed to win a game within the first three matchday was for the campaign 2010-11, at the time Lotina’s team added three draws in the first three league meetings.

Real Sociedad have only won three of their last thirteen games visiting the Riazor, and they only scored three goals in their last six games played there. Last season Depor clinched their biggest win of the season hosting Los Txuri-urdines (5-1).

The arrival of Lucas Pérez revitalized the idea of the 4-4-2 and, despite the Galician isn’t totally fit to play, coach Pepe Mel is ready to use his favorite system and for it Adrian López will be the one performing alongside Florin Andone in attack. Portuguese Bruno Gama is also stepping in on the right wing, while Fede Cartabia will remain playing n the left flank.

Team news: Two players remain at the injury room: Carles Gil and Rubén Martínez. Late signings Lucas Pérez and Costel Pantilimon are part of the roster and will be on the bench. The players our for tactical reasons are Albentosa, Gerard Valentín, Saúl, Borja Valle and Emre Çolak.

Man to watch: Striker Adrián López. The Asturian had minutes in the first two matchdays, and now has the big opportunity to be a starter performing alongside Andone. His last appearance as a starter was in the 0-2 loss before Valencia CF that cost the relegation on the season 2010/11 (May 21, 2011), so this could be a redemption to him.

Picked players: (18) Tytoń, Pantilimon (goalkeepers); Juanfran, Arribas, Sidnei, Schär, Luisinho, Navarro (defenders); Guilherme, Mosquera, Borges, Fede Valverde, Bruno Gama, Cartabia (midfielders); Bakkali, Adrián, Lucas Pérez & Andone (attackers).

Predicted lineup: (4-4-2) Tytoń – Juanfran, Schär, Sidnei, Luisinho – Bruno Gama, Guilherme, Mosquera, Cartabia – Adrián, Andone.

Real Sociedad will play the Europa League on this season while they target the Champions League for the next one. La Liga is a hard competition with several big clubs that also aspire to the biggest tournament in Europe, but despite not been part of the clubs with the biggest budget (€76.3 million this season) they are real candidates to the first four places due to the solidity of their squad.

And this solidity is a consequence of continuity, because the Basques were able to support the pressure of other clubs and kept their best men and only lost defender Yuri Berchiche, who was transferred to PSG for fifteen million Euros.

Coach Eusebio Sacristán highly values this continuity and for this reason he continues to play with the block from last campaign. So, neither of their three summer signings (Januzaj, Llorente and De la Bella) are expected to be starters. The team is coming after two victories in which the offensive potential was the main strength of the team.

Team news: Centre-back Raúl Navas (vertebral facture) and midfielder Jon Guridi (knee) are out of the games for injury reasons, also attacker Mikel Oyarzabal, who picked an ankle knock playing for Spain U-21. He wasn’t able to train at the end of the week.

Man to watch: Attacker William José. Real Sociedad have scored three goals in each one of the two liga games played so far, and the Brazilian has netted once in each meeting. He will be leading the attack and promises to be a headache to Depor’s defence.

Picked players: (18) Rulli, Toño Ramírez (goalkeepers); Odriozola, Aritz Elustondo, Diego Llorente, Iñigo Martínez, De La Bella, Kévin Rodrigues (defenders); Xabi Prieto, Zubeldia, Illarramendi, Zurutuza, Sergio Canales (midfielders); Carlos Vela, Adnan Januzaj, Juanmi, William José & Jon Bautista (attackers)

Predicted lineup: (4-3-3) Rulli – Odriozola, Elustondo, Iñigo Martínez, Kevin Rodrigues – Prieto, Illarramendi, Zurutuxa – Canales, William José, Juanmi.



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