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Villarreal will be hoping to deport Deportivo La Coruña

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Depor coach Fernández has been doing a lot of this.
Depor coach Fernández has been doing a lot of this.
Denis Doyle/Getty Images

After the dramatic win against Atletico Madrid that got many a Villarreal pundit in tears, Villarreal are all set to take on Deportivo.   The Submarine haven't lost to Depor since 2009, but lingering in 17th place they may prove dangerous-- having nothing to lose as we approach the new year.

Despite victory the week before in the league against Elche,  the Galician side took a hammering against Malaga in the Copa del Rey.  Confidence won't be at its best.   And the club is still recovering from the repercussions of the Depor-Atleti ultras battle, arrests of various members of the Riazor Blues, and so forth.

Depor have only one away win all year--Eibar on Sept 15--and home wins against Valencia (3-0! how did that happen?) and Eibar (1-0).  They don't score much (13 goals so far in 15 matches) but they defend pretty well (24 allowed).

The most notable player on their squad is former Porto, Valencia, Zaragoza and Tottenham striker Hélder Postiga, who signed for them in the summer.  Postiga is one of the elite goal poachers from the noughties era.   He's 32 now, and has only scored once this season, but we'll have to watch out for him since goals against us are normally poached upon rather than screamers.

Slowly pressing up the table, all that is needed is a hiccup from Valencia and the Yellows could go into the new year in the top 5. It's unknown who will be playing upfront with Gio returning to the squad and Gerrard netting his 9th goal of the season-- one behind leading goal scorer Vietto-- in the Copa.  It will be interesting to see how Marcelino resolves this.  Good for the fans a headache for the manager.  Victor Ruiz seems to be slotting into the squad well, which may bring another headache when Mateo Musacchio is ready to return (he practiced with the team this week).

The team call is:

  • Keepers: Asenjo and Juan Carlos.
  • Defenders: Gabriel, Jaume Costa, Víctor Ruiz, Mario, Rukavina and Dorado.
  • Midfielders: Bruno, Tomás Pina, Trigueros, Jonathan dos Santos, Moi Gómez y Cheryshev.
  • Strikers: Uche, Vietto, Giovani y Gerard.

My prediction is 2-0 to Villarreal. Also glad to see Uche signing until 2017. Good to see his efforts have been rewarded.

Note this match is early (6AM eastern time in the USA, 3am on the west coast!) which means that it is NOT, for you USA fans, televised on beinsport.  You'll have to find streams.  Endavant Villarreal!!