10 games played. 11 goals scored. Anaemic in front of the goal. Slow build-up play. Beaten on the counterattack. I have read this narrative before. The only difference from last season is that we have been a little better in defense (thanks to Mellberg's arrival).
Last season's loss to Mirandés at home in the Copa del Rey claimed the job of the then coach Juan Carlos Garrido. I dont think that Julio Velasquez's job is on the line tomorrow but his seat has definitely gotten warmer over the past couple of weeks.
It is time to forget the stinker in Huelva and start a positive streak.
The return of Bruno Soriano and Olof Mellberg is a big boost. But the team will miss Hernán Pérez in the attack. Pandiani is also back from his injury.
As for Mirandés, they shot into fame with their incredible run in the Copa del Rey last season. They won a deserved promotion from Segunda B to Liga Adelante. The going has been tough for them so far. A solitary win and two draws puts them in the penultimate position in the table ahead of 'colista' Guadalajara only on goal difference.
Mirandés will be missing their striker (and banker) Pablo Infante. Ex-Rangers and Sporting player Nacho Novo is in their squad and should start at El Madrigal.
Velasquez said something to the effect of "doesnt matter even if it is Bayern, we should get 3 points". I'm very glad that they arent Bayern. Mirandés is a modest side further weakened by absence of Infante. If we have problems beating them at home, we have to seriously reconsider our chances of promotion. Vamos! A guanyar!
Keepers: Juan Carlos and Mariño.
Defenders: Javi Venta, Mario, Musacchio, Mellberg, Jaume Costa and Truyols.
Midfielders: Marcos Senna, Cani, Bruno, Trigueros, Toribio and Moi Gómez.
Forwards: Cavenaghi, Pandiani, Uche and Gerard Bordas.
Villarreal line-up: 4-4-2
I expect Uche and Cavenaghi to start upfront. Bruno & Senna in the doble pivot. Cani and Trigueros on the wings. Costa-Mellberg-Musacchio-Mario in the defense.
Mirandés expected line-up 4-2-3-1 (according to Marca)
Luis García; Llamas, Alex Pérez, Helguera, Sergio Diaz; David López, Camacho; Jorge Larena o Núñez, Nacho Novo, Borja; y Tariq