Squad news

THINKING OF VILLARREAL

28 Jan 2009
Lotina is preparing a 4-3-2-1 scheme for the upcoming game against Villarreal, similar figure to the one used at the Bernab?©u stadium, though with some changes, like the presence of Riki in attack. Meanwhile the ’yellow submarine’ will arrive with important casualties.

Coach Miguel Angel Lotina already informed that he is willing to continue using the 4-3-2-1 system that was implemented against Real Madrid, and on Wednesday he started to test the formation that will face Villarreal on Sunday (17h00 CET). So far he has tested the same figure with three pivotes and two playmakers.

This new change in the system has been made, mainly, due the injury of Guardado and because Lotina sees that Valer??n has raised his physical level, as the coach explained to reporters on Tuesday, �If we changed the other day the way in which we play, it was because Guardado was not prepared, and because I considered that Lafita and Valer??n will feel more comfortable compared to the other system. I saw that Valer??n was better with the pass of the days, with more pace, and now we can see he’s prepared, but I don’t know how will he evolve, let’s hope he will the same of Sunday. Its great news to know Valer??n is fine, because with him on the pitch, we have a team that knows what it is doing, you search for Valer??n at any moment and you know he is there, and that’s an advantage for any team.�

In the beginning Lotina will send the same defensive line that lost against Real Madrid, the only novelty should be the return of Dani Aranzubia to the goal. Manuel Pablo at the right, Filipe Luis on the left, Alberto Lopo and Z?© Castro at the centre should be the ones for the job.

The main doubt is who will compose the line of three pivotes in midfield, Joan Verd?? should have a secure place, but the other two are a mystery. Antonio Tom??s played at the Bernab?©u, but it seems that now he is giving a step backwards in the plans of Lotina, therefore the two remaining places are disputed between three men: Juan Rodr?­guez, Julian De Guzman and Sergio. The session of Thursday should help to clear the doubts since it will be a tactical session behind closed doors at the Riazor.

Valer??n and Angel Lafita will cover the two playmaking functions, and all appoints that Riki will the replacement of Bodipo. The Madrilenian is the striker with more minutes in liga at the squad (589), but so far he has only appeared four times as a starter. Now Lotina trusts in him in order to score the goals. It’s important to have in mind that Depor has only scored one goal within the last four official matches, actually it ended scoreless in the last three (0-3 Vs Sevilla in Copa, 0-5 at Barcelona and 0-1 at Real Madrid in liga).

Villarreal, meanwhile, arrives to the game living a complicate situation: with only nine points added in its last nine liga matches and with important casualties at the squad. Starting with Guiseppe Rossi, the Italian attacker, Pichichi at Villarreal with nine goals in liga,  will miss the clash at the Riazor because on Tuesday  he suffered an ankle sprain.

Nihat Kahveci is also out of the game due his endless knee problems, meaning that the striker at the Riazor will be Joseba Llorente. Pascal Cygan (dead leg) will miss the game too, also midfielder Bruno Soriano who is suspended after picking the fifth yellow card of the season in the game against Osasuna. At least coach Pellegrini is recovering Uruguayan defender Diego God?­n and probably Gonzalo Rodr?­guez, the first player was suspended while the second has fully surpassed an angina problem.

ARCHIVE NEWS JAN/09

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