Squad news

THINKING OF RACING

26 Nov 2010
Lotina is recovering four players for the clash against Racing Santander, but will still missing some key men for the coming weeks. Meanwhile, coach Portugal could be sacked if he loses against Depor.

On Wednesday it was clear that Lotina is recovering four players for the visit to Racing Santander (Sunday, 17h00 CET): left-back defender Knut Rindarøy, central defender Ze Castro, striker Lassad Nouioui and right winger Jonathan Urreta. The four of them played and left a positive impression in a one-hour training match between Deportivo and Fabril (3-1).

The Uruguayan winger scored the third goal after an assist of Juan Dominguez and played the full sixty minutes; he was a constant threat for Fabril’s defense and despite the initial doubts of the coach, it is clear that he is fit to play on Sunday, at least for some minutes.

Ze Castro and Rindarøy are also fit to play, actually the duo combined to score the first goal against Fabril; it was a cross of the Norwegian side defender that the Portuguese sent to the back of the net through a drilling shot. The ex-Atletico played the full sixty minutes of the game, while ‘Rinda ‘only performed in the first half of thirty minutes. The participation of Lassad was more discrete and he was replaced at half-time by Dioni, but the Tunisian is ready to have some minutes in liga, an important fact taking in mind that Lotina had to play with Fabril’s Dioni as starter in the previous liga game.

However, it isn’t expected that any of these four men will be starters against Racing, mainly because Lotina prefers to keep the same lineup that has achieved the latest positive results, but there’s the doubt with Lassad as Lotina could choose him to take the spot of Dioni at the starting formation, though in the last training Pablo Álvarez was the one entering into the formation. Anyhow the comeback of these players means good news for the Basque coach as his Depor will have to play in two fronts in the coming weeks (liga & Copa).

But Deportivo will still missing some key men, and it’s that left winger Andrés Guardado (hamstring), striker Riki (appendicitis), defensive midfielder Juca (thigh) and left-back defender Claudio Morel (ankle sprain) remain out and it isn’t clear if the four of them will be able to return before Christmas.

Also remembering that playmaker Michel is out until March of 2011 after going through surgery (knee meniscus).  To mention that Albert Lopo hasn’t been training at the top and didn’t took part of Wednesday’s game against Fabril as he still dragging a hamstring problem, but doctors affirm that he will be ready to play at El Sardinero.

Things look more complicated at Racing Santander, coach Miguel Ángel Portugal is under a big pressure as his team is just one point above relegation, and it has been rumoured that he could be fired if his team loses against Deportivo.

For the game against the Galicians the Burgos-born coach is missing defender Domingo Cisma and Senegalese midfielder Papakouly Diop, both are suspended, while midfielder Manuel Arana is out due to a groin problem. Racing also has two long-term casualties: Greek Alexandros Tziolis, who suffered a tibia fracture playing for his national team, while attacking midfielder Óscar Serrano is out since the past season after suffering a knee ligaments injury in a liga match against Villarreal FC.

Besides, defender Pablo Pinillos is dragging a muscular problem and striker Marcus Rosenberg is dealing with an ankle injury, but it is expected that both will be fit to face Depor. Rosenberg is the current Pichichi at the Cantabrian team with three goals scored in liga, however he has been criticized for wasting clear opportunities to score, mainly in the previous match with UD Levante.

During the week, president Fernando Pernía talked to Sportpaper AS and didn’t want to confirm if there’s an ultimatum to Portugal if he loses this game, “I always said that you never announce an ultimatum; neither the crisis, you just resolve the issues. There wasn’t a meeting with the board of directors to analyze the subject, beyond of what we said about our latest game, which was simply terrible. I believe we need to think of the situation, for the moment it isn’t the right time to have a meeting with the players, and actually I don’t think our situation is an issue related to the team. To be honest, on Sunday, there were players that made a wonderful match, like captain Pedro Munitis, so maybe we need to have a personal approach to the players that didn’t make a good game.”

He neither gave importance to the fact that Deportivo has a very good record when it plays at El Sardinero, “We also had a great record at the pitch of Valencia and look what happened (0-1 loss on matchday 02)... We have to forget about statistics and all the things that you, the journalists, like to emphasize; we just need to go out for everything. I am convinced that we will defeat Depor on Sunday.”

ARCHIVE NEWS NOV/10

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