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Villarreal B-Cartagena preview and game thread

Velazquez and B
Velazquez and B

We're combining these in the absence of a TV stream for this game, though Radio Nou ought to provide some coverage. Unfortunate that we can't watch this one, because this is a key game for the Mini-Submarine. Cartagena is 21st in the Segunda table, on 16 points, two behind Villarreal B. Bottom club Nastic has already lost; Girona plays at Huelva and Huesca hosts Deportivo, so whoever wins this match could move up a bit.

Our opponents:

In a nutshell, Cartagena's problem is offense. They've scored only 11 goals this season--the next lowest in the Segunda has 19--so in spite of a decent defense (23 goals allowed) they are finding it difficult to pick up points. They are on something of a roll: after four consecutive 0-0 draws (!), they lost to Xerez 3-0, and then recovered to win at home last weekend, 2-0 over Huesca.

Like Villarreal B, they have changed coaches recently, with Carlos Rios taking over after the Xerez loss. He kept Recre in the Segunda last season and his brief is to do the same this time. Against Huesca he gave young striker Salva Chamorro a rare start and he responded with his first goal for the club. According to Wikipedia, Salva is actually on loan to Cartagena from Villarreal C. If that's indeed true, we all know what to expect today....

Ex-Levante keeper Manolo Reina has played well for the efesé; expect to see him in goal.

Villarreal B:

Joselu, Castellani and Mariño are with the first team and Marcos Gullón is suspended, so coach Velazquez has some changes to make. Airam is likely to be an important player both today and going forward for the Mini-Submarine; reports are Tenerife asked to buy him back and Villarreal said no.

Kiko Olivas returns from suspension and Florian Lejeune is not travelling to Madrid, so the defense should be better than last week (one hopes). Here is the team call, light on defenders and heavy on midfielders again (though some of these guys can play as second strikers):

Keepers: Jorge, Ortolà.

Defenders: Truyols, Lejeune, Kiko, Jaume Costa.

Midfielders: Jordi Pablo, Pablo Íñiguez, Llorente, Toribio, Manu Trigueros, Iriome, Moi, Lucas Porcar, Edu Ramos, Pedro Vázquez.

Strikers: Kike López, Airam.

New signing Barrientos has only had a couple of practices with the team so isn't included.

Interesting side plot:

Cartagena has asked Villarreal for Gerard Bordas, either on loan or via purchase. But Sr. Roig doesn't seem interested in assisting a direct rival to escape the relegation zone. And Bordas's former coach, Javi Gracia, may want to bring him to Greece. (Note that Gracia manages FC Kerkyra, not Olympiakos Volos; that club is currently inactive).


FC Cartagena have a submarine (yellow, in fact) on their club crest. Find out why here.


It's hard to see us keeping a clean sheet, so we'll need at least two goals to win. And without Marcos Gullón, I'm not sure we will have the experience on the pitch to see us through. 1-1 maybe?