Friday, February 18, 2011

Valencia CF vs Sporting Gijon - Match Preview

Its time for Valencia CF to focus once again on the Spanish championship after the Champions League first leg matches finished. It wasn't the best result for Valencia CF, but it wasn't the worst either and scoring just one goal on the return leg will reset the tie and from there on its anybody's game. But first Valencia CF host Sporting Gijon at the Mestalla and will look to extend their lead over Villarreal with a win on Saturday and sweet 3 points.

Valencia CF as you all know is 3rd in the standings with 47 points, 2 points more than 4th placed Villarreal. Rival teams and the ones that usually fight with Valencia over champions league spots like Sevilla and Atletico Madrid are right now pretty far off and their troubles don't seem like they are about to stop, so Valencia is as safe as it gets from that regard. A bit of problem can potentially cause the surge that Bilbao has, though they lost their last match so its possible they are going to slump and Espanyol has also lost some ground in recent weeks so should Valencia CF win tomorrow its going to be in a great position.

Cezar Sanchez Valencia CF goalkeeper has recovered one week ago and even featured as a substitute in the champions league match against Schalke 04.
Moya though is still injured, although he is also close to recovering, Albelda is still injured, while Mata has been fit for some time now and he is also likely to feature in the first team against Sporting Gijon.

Valencia CF shouldn't take Sporting lightly as they are coming from a draw against Barcelona a feat little teams can achieve. In fact Sporting had the lead over Barcelona for 80 minutes of the match, until Villa saved them with a wonderful lob over the goalkeeper and into the net.

Valencia CF official squad:
Goalkeepers: Guaita y César.
Defense: Miguel, Bruno, Ricardo Costa, Stankevicius, David Navarro y Mathieu.
Midfield: Topal, Tino Costa, Éver, Joaquín, Pablo y Mata.
Attack: Jonas, Aduriz, Domínguez y Soldado.

Sporting Gijon is sitting at 16th place on the table with only 23 points, just 1 point more above the relegation zone and this means they will be fighting till the end of the season to stay in Primera Division.
Sporting Gijon is a good team though and a very solid one when motivated as seen in their last match where they almost beat Barcelona, but in the end only managed a draw, which is also a feat of itself as barely any team can get a positive result against Barcelona.

Sporting top goalscorer is Diego Castro Gimenez with 8 goals scored and he is also their best player with his 8 goals, 2 assists and the one most useful in midfield, so Valencia CF will need to focus on this guy if they are to win the midfield battle and also stop Sporting Gijon mounting serious attacks towards Guaita's goal.

Sporting Gijon official squad: to be announced...

Valencia CF Technical:
Formation: 4-4-2
Line up: Guaita; Miguel, Stanke, R. Costa, Mathieu; Pablo, Topal, Tino, Mata; Soldado, Aduriz
Tactics: High attacking frequency from the wings, high defensive line and opposing field pressure, deep zone defensive midfielder, mostly high crosses, man marking on Diego Castro.

With the players Emery has chosen to feature in this match its likely that the team will start with the 4-4-2 formation. The tactics will be the familiar ones for 4-4-2 with the added bonus of Diego Castro probably being man marked. The three things Emery must decide is whether to start Banega or Tino with midfield alongside Topal, whether to start Mata or Pablo on the left and whether to include Jonas as starter or not.

Result prediction:
Valencia CF 3-1 Sporting Gijon
Usually when I predict Valencia to win with more than 2 goals all hell breaks loose and Valencia end up loosing. Hopefully though this is not the case tomorrow or else I'll just predict Valencia loosing every match and in reality that would mean win in every match.
But seriously though I think its time for Valencia to shine and score more than 2 goals. Yes Sporting is a tough opponent, but who isn't? This is the time for Valencia to win with a lot of goals scored and the players have the ability to do so, but the question is do they have the belief?