Squad news


26 Oct 2012
Five former players and a coach remember what they lived in the derbies, from Jose Ramón to Borja Fernandez; the major part of them believe that Celta is the favourite, though they also say that anything can happen in a derby match.

Newspaper La Opinión A Coruña talked with four former players of Deportivo about their memories of the Galician derbies and their opinion on Saturday’s game. The first one to talk was Javier Manjarin, who played for Depor between 19993 and 1999; he was remembering his derbies, “I remember all of them, especially the ones we won. These are important meetings as people make you remember on the street; these are motivating games and it’s more special when you win.”

“It doesn’t matter if the victory is achieved at home or away, it’s the same. I have been lucky enough to win at both stadiums and even scoring goals. The difference of achieving the victory at home is that the fans are more involved, they are part of the joy that you are feeling.” He added.

For the Asturian player there are no favourites for the derby, “Both teams arrive living a similar situation, perhaps Celta is following a better path both in game and results, but in these kinds of games there are no favourites. For me both teams have the same chances, the one managing in a better way the nerves and the tension is the one with the better options of winning.”

Donato, who was one of the few players involved in the five titles of Depor; he was also remembering the old derbies, “I took part in many and have wonderful memories of each one in which we won. My best memory is when we eliminated them from Copa Del Rey [season 1998/99]. I also remember a derby in which I ended playing as goalkeeper [99/00 as Songo´o was sent off]”

The Rio de Janeiro-born former player believes that Celta has a slightly advantage for this derby, “The team playing in front of their fans is always the favourite to win, though in a derby match this situation may change. The standings are never influential; neither of both teams should feel proud of what they have done so far, so it’s pretty important to see Deportivo going out mentalized. They should go out there for the victory, because they’ll enjoy several opportunities.”

José Ramón González, the brother of Fran, is one of the few players that lived the previous promotion to Primera and also the ‘Super Depor’ era; he was remembering the derbies of the season 1999/00, “Paradoxically, the derbies that I remember the most are the defeats. As we lost at Balaídos people were already ruling us out to conquer la liga; in the end we brought the title to A Coruña”

He was also saying that Celta is the favourite for the game, “This year I see that Celta is the favourite, but in this kinds of games things turn to be more equal, mainly for the meaning of all the derbies. In the end everything is more balanced.”

Former keeper Jacques Songo'o, who was at Depor between 1996 and 2001 plus the season 2003/04, was remembering the great goal of Djalminha on the season 2000/01, “Without doubt the best derby was the one of Djalminha’s goal, without doubt the one that that brings my best memories. It was spectacular, for our performance, everything that happened and the great goal of Djalminha.”

The Cameroonian man is hoping that Depor can win Saturday’s derby, “This year the derby is complicated, because both teams have just lost their previous games. Deportivo have enough squad to win there as they did last year, which brought confidence to the team. They must go out in order to score first, because it’s an important fact in a derby.”

Meanwhile, Javier Irureta, who was the coach that brought the liga title, was analyzing the upcoming derby at Radio Cadena Cope, “There are no favourites in a derby match. Any side can win. The game will be open, but I don’t think we are going to see many goals. At Depor, Riki is going to be important. He’s playing good. At Celta, Aspas could be the key; surely he will be pretty motivated.”

Finally, Borja Fernández, the last player to score a goal in a Galician derby, was remembering what he lived on last season, “I hope my former team mates can win. It’s the best opportunity to do it. It’s the most important goal that I’ve scored, or at least the most relevant one, for me, the club and the fans. I’ve seen the goal one thousand times, don’t know exactly how many.”

“I know what I felt exactly, I couldn’t believe it, but now I watch it and have the weird feeling that it wasn’t me. It’s pretty hard to explain. From time to time people hang the video on Twitter, and they put me on the link.” The midfielder finalized.



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