Valencia CF vs Malaga CF
Date: 17.08.2013; 23:00 CET
1st matchday, La Liga
Coaches: Miroslav Djukic and Bernd Schuster
The preseason is over and in several hours Valencia's new season will begin against Malaga CF who unlike last season are significantly weakened with some of their key players leaving, as well as manager Mauricio Pellegrini leaving to Manchester City.
Valencia CF are coming to this match after a satisfactory preseason that started off very slow, but it build up steam and ended up being very positive with good football to watch and the results to back it up. Now is the serious test though and Valencia CF is looking to recoup after last season and recapture a spot in the Champions League which it missed out on last season.
In the preseason though Valencia CF ended up losing 3 and drawing one match in the first 4 games in a row, before rectifying the situation against Inter Milan which was beaten by 4 goals to nil, then a small 1-0 victory over Everton to capture the 5th position in the International Champions Cup.
As far as transfer go Valencia CF sold Tino Costa, Nelson Valdez, Gago and Roberto Soldado, not renewing Albelda's contract and bringing in Michel who was a Valencia CF player, but sold to Levante, then bringing Oriol Romeu on loan from Chelsea FC, of course Javi Fuego came in for free as the first transfer to Valencia, then came Postiga after the selling of Soldado and last Dorlan Pabon on a 5 year contract for 7 million euros.
Valencia CF squad:
Goalkeepers: Guaita, Alves
Defenders: Joao, Ricardo Costa, Ramí, Victor Ruiz, Guardado
Midfielders: Oriol Romeu, Javi Fuego, Éver Banega, Míchel, Feghouli, Bernat, Fede, Viera, Canales
Forwards: Alcácer, Postiga
Technical Details Valencia CF (probable setups):
Line-up: Alves; Joao, Rami, R. Costa, Guardado; Fuego, Michel, Fede; Banega, Viera; Postiga.
Tactics: High defensive line, own half pressure, medium frequency wing attacks, mixed passing, high pressure
Malaga CF is a different team compared to last season and should compete somewhere in the middle of the pack. They lost all their key players from Isco, Joaquin, Toulan, Demichelis, Saviola and even few new and upcoming players. On top of that they lost Pellegrino or should I say they sold him to Manchester City and without all these players and without such a great coach I seriously doubt Malaga CF can be half as good as last season.
I expect them to come fighting with a new coach and quite a bit new players, but I expect them to struggle quite a lot, especially in the first several matches before they are able to find their footing and stabilise.
Valencia CF 3-0 Malaga CF
Aa I've written Valencia's preseason ended up good after a slow and difficult start, while Malaga are a team in disarray with half their key players from last season gone and I expect a big and clear victory by Valencia CF and anything else will be a huge disappointment.