Squad news

GALICIAN DERBY: TWO DIFFERENT STYLES

12 Apr 2012
Depor and Celta have some similarities, mainly for the way they perform on the pitch, but clearly both outfits represents different styles and different ways to see football. It’s the experience of Deportivo before the youth policy of Celta.

Galicia commands liga Adelante on its present edition, Deportivo is the first place and RC Celta the second spot at the standings, and it has been like that for some weeks; both teams are used to dominate their games and are leading several statistical departments; both are the best offenses at Segunda and are among the four best defenses in the league; both Galician teams are also the two sides with more victories in the tournament and usually have the ball possession in their matches.

But it doesn’t mean that both clubs have a similar style, actually it’s quite the opposite. Celta and Deportivo clearly demonstrate that it’s possible to have similar numbers despite been following a different philosophy, Depor is currently a club that focus on experience in order to achieve the goal of the promotion, and Celta is more concern in the growth of its youngsters.

Deportivo was among the big budgets when it was at Primera División and currently is the biggest one at Liga Adelante, so its economy allows having some luxury players, which means men with enough experience to face the challenge of a promotion. Just to point that between captains Valerón and Manuel Pablo they accumulate 75 matches disputed at the UEFA Champions League.

Meanwhile, the only two players at Celta that had disputed a European competition are defender Natxo Insa, who played once for Villarreal CF at the Champions League, and midfielder Enrique de Lucas, who disputed the UEFA Cup with Chelsea FC. Besides, only a few of the players at Celta have had the privilege to play at Primera División,  while at Depor the only two players that haven’t tasted yet the flavor at the elite of Spanish football are new signings Diogo Salomão and Bruno Gama.

Of the eleven starters at RC Celta that faced FC Cartagena, only six of them had experience at Primera, and almost all of them have disputed less than 50 games at the elite of Spanish football, actually combined these six players have played 354 games at Liga BBVA, that’s three games less than the ones played by Valerón alone at Primera.

Curiously, this gap in the experience of the players isn’t noticed analyzing the age of the team; on the past week the average age of Celta’s starters before Cartagena CF was 27.21 years, while the one of Depor’s team facing Real Murcia was slightly older: 27.61.

In any case the gap in the experience of the players clearly marks the philosophy used at both sides; RC Celta is a club that, due to the financial situation and its long period living at Segunda, has been forced to rely on its base football, i.e. the youngsters coming out from Celta B. And it’s that eleven of the twenty-five components of the squad passed before through Celta B [including Hugo Mallo, who was directly promoted from the Juvenil A squad]; for the past game before Villarreal B coach Paco Herrera played with nine of the eleven starters been former players of the youth teams , and this was the highest mark at the club within the last 32 years .

Depor, meanwhile, is feeling attracted to this policy of youngsters, mainly in the last years as president Lendoiro has been pushing for the project of Abegondo, but things have been growing slowly at La Coruña as the presence of youngsters isn’t as important as it was wished by the president.

Currently there are only seven players at the first team that played before at Deportivo B, and the half of them are special cases: Laure and Lassad just spent one year at Fabril and it can’t be said that they are a product of the youth teams, while Xisco was sold to Newcastle United and returned “home” just because he was searching for minutes.

So, the only four real products of Abegondo currently at the first team are midfielders Álex Bergantiños, Juan Dominguez, plus defenders Diego Seoane and David Rochela, and only the first two have been regular starters on this season.

Another way to notice the difference in this aspect is the number of games played with the B squad; before FC Cartagena, Celta played with six products coming out from the youth teams (Sergio, Hugo Mallo, Tuñez, Lago, Oubiña and Aspas), and together they accumulate 484 appearances with Celta B; meanwhile the six products of the youth teams that are currently at Depor’s first squad just had 346 games with Depor B.

 Definitely the paths and the styles are different, but it’s also true that the goal is the same at the two biggest clubs in Galicia: to find the road back to Primera División.

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