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SEASON 2015/16, COACHING ANALYSIS

22 May 2016
Víctor secured a second permanence for Deportivo, but diminished the faith of the fans on him with the performance of the team in the second round, while he planted doubts about the way he manages the thing after the crisis Luisinho-Lopo.

It surely was a year full of learning for coach Víctor Sánchez. He started the season with the support of the club and the public after the miraculously salvation on the previous season. These feelings were reinforced with the strong start of Deportivo on the season, a team that by December it had only lost four times during the league tournament.

The main characteristic of this team was the sense of always knowing what to do on the field, it could have been a bad day in the office like the home game with Sporting, but Deportivo always found the way to get up. In that same game the Galicians passed from been 0-2 in just ten minutes to tie the game and even been close to score the winner before half-time.

And the rivals quickly noticed, Luis Enrique warned about Depor when Los Blanquiazules visited the Camp Nou back in December, "It's a game that we face with caution, not only because they have only lost one game of the seven games they have played away from home, but because, after analyzing it, we realize the danger: it is a strong team both in an offensive and defensive level. There is nothing from the Depor of last season. It is one of the teams that has surprised me in the beginning of this season. It's going to cost a lot because it's very intense team, I love this Deportivo."

Depor managed to tie that game after been down 0-2 and it will be difficult to forget the expression of Luis Enrique after witnessing the second goal of Deportivo in that game. At that point it was pretty evident that Depor were a tough team to face. At the end of the first round the Galicians were closer to Europe than to relegation and on January Víctor signed a one-year renewal. Some people even protested as they thought it was too short.

But things radically changed in 2016. Deportivo were only going to win two games and Víctor never found the way to change the dynamic. Suddenly Depor lost the freshness and the intelligence witnessed before. Truly the team was unlucky in some games as it dropped points at the last second like in the home clashes with Valencia CF (1-1) and Málaga CF (3-3), but it’s also true that the negative streak was so long that it cannot be considered as a mere product of bad luck.

It’s when Víctor showed his worst face. He was unable to change the dynamic of the team and his decisions started to be criticized. Even the fact of using two men to throw the corner-kicks became a debate in A Coruña. He also started to introduce changes to the traditional 4-4-2 system, and the criticism became harder.

He was also criticized for not recognizing the errors and instead talked of external issues, like before the game with Real Madrid, time when, looking back to the second round, he blamed the lack of winter signings for the lack of results, “For me the second round is different as you are not facing the same rivals. We made an analysis four matchdays before the end and it turns out that from place eight to eighteen, ten clubs have made winter reinforcements, and from those ten clubs eight improved their results in the second round. So, the teams weren’t the same. The second round was bad, but I believe it is not right to say that it was a shame.” He said.

So, his Deportivo clinched the salvation thanks to the rent of the first round, but there was another dimension related to him that worried the fans: his relationship with the players. It turns out that he had problems with Luisinho since his arrival, something that was hided from the public eye until exploding before the game with Villarreal. At the time another storming relation with Lopo was revealed.

It left the feeling that the coach has completely lost the control over the team, but the true is that after his last press conference a big part of the public gave him the reason for how the crisis was managed.  Still, and despite clinching the goal of securing the permanence in two straight seasons, there are doubts about the convenience of keeping Víctor for the campaign 2016/17.
RCDLC.com rating: 6.0

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