Palma/Madrid, Apr 8 (EFE).- There are “eight lives” that Mallorca has left to avoid relegation and the first will be played this Saturday (4:15 p.m.) in the visit of Atlético de Madrid, which is about to reach the halfway point of the “league of 14” that was raised a month and a half ago, in which he has added six consecutive victories.
The Mexican Javier Aguirre -who debuts at the Visit Mallorca Estadi after debuting with defeat in Getafe- and the Argentine Diego Pablo Simeone are two of the coaches with the most personality in LaLiga Santander. His ability to generate strong ideas is infinite. As much as to rename what remains of the championship.
If for the Mexican coach of Mallorca the eight days ahead are “eight lives” and they cannot “disregard any”, not even the one in which they receive the defending champion -whom they defeated in the first leg at the Wanda Metropolitano (1 -two)-; For the Argentine coach of Atlético, his “league of 14” has allowed him to sign the best streak of the course and settle in ‘Champions’ positions.
‘Vasco’ Aguirre longs for his idea to prevail as ‘Cholo’ has done in the red and white squad, since Mallorca has chained seven consecutive defeats, of which six took the place of Luis García Plaza on the bench and caused the arrival of Aguirre, who suffered the last.
The Mexican has returned to the Santander League with the aim of rescuing Mallorca. He took the reins with the team one point from salvation (26), although now there are two to eight days left for the end of the championship, after the defeat at the Alfonso Pérez Coliseum and Cádiz’s draw in Valencia.
Simeone also aspires to impose his plan, as effective in LaLiga Santander as the source of controversy after Tuesday’s Champions League match against Manchester City (1-0), when Atlético managed to place two lines of five players behind the ball. “We cannot assess what people may think, we have to focus on this league of 14”, he reiterated this Friday.
That ‘league of 14’ in which Atlético counts its six games for victories -some convincing, others very misleading, such as the 4-1 against Alavés on the last day- reaches its halfway point this Saturday, with the rojiblanco team not only installed in the ‘Champions’ zone with four points over Betis, but fighting for second place in a triple tie at 57 points with Barcelona (which has one game in hand) and Sevilla.
A cross between the top and the bottom of the table that is preceded in the local mood by the echoes of the controversy of the defeat in Getafe. This week there has been more talk on the island about the expulsion of Argentine central defender Franco Russo, who left the team with ten in the 63rd minute, than about Atlético’s visit
Mallorca filed an appeal for the second yellow card that Russo saw, but the Competition Committee dismissed it, even acknowledging that it is not “possible” to determine if the ball hit the right arm that the South American center-back had extended or the left one. that he had it completely attached to the body.
The Mallorcan fans will express their anger this Saturday at the decisions of the referee Mateu Lahoz with whistles and handkerchiefs before and after the start of the match, as announced on social networks.
In purely sporting terms, Russo’s loss in the axis of defense will be covered by Antonio Raíllo, who, together with winger Jaume Costa, will be under the orders of Javier Aguirre after both serving a one-game suspension. The Slovak center-back Martin Valjent also returns, he left at the last minute due to discomfort in Getafe, but Salva Sevilla will not be there due to muscle problems, according to Aguirre this Friday.
On the part of Atlético, three casualties are certain and one more is likely. Due to injury, the Mexican Héctor Herrera and the Uruguayan José María Giménez will not be present, for the third and second consecutive game respectively. The Argentine Ángel Correa neither, because he has to serve his second and last game of sanction for the red card received against Rayo. The doubt is Montenegrin Stefan Savic, with discomfort in his left foot.
Without the Balkan, Simeone could choose to cross the Croatian Sime Vrsaljko and delay Marcos Llorente to the right lane. Felipe Monteiro and Reinildo Mandava would complete the trio of central defenders, while the main question is who will be the left winger, Renan Lodi or Yannick Carrasco.
Captain Jorge Resurrección ‘Koke’ would return in midfield after his suspension against Alavés, accompanied by Geoffrey Kondogbia and Thomas Lemar.
Ahead, Luis Suárez has exercised among the starters, but Simeone has insisted on “holding” the current line when asked about the Charrúa, which points to the continuity of the Antoine Griezmann-Joao Félix couple, with the Portuguese boiling: accumulates seven goals and two assists in nine games.
Majorca: Sergio Rico; Pablo Maffeo, Raíllo, Valjent, Oliván, Kubo, Baba, Kang In Lee, Dani Rodríguez, Ángel and Muriqi.
Atletico Madrid: Oblak; Llorente, Vrsaljko, Felipe, Reinildo, Lodi or Carrasco; Koke, Kondogbia, Lemar; Joao Felix and Griezmann
Referee: Juan Martínez Munuera (Valencian Committee).
Stadium: Visit Mallorca
Time: 16.15 hours (14.15 GMT)
Positions: Mallorca 18th, 26 points; Atlético de Madrid 3rd, 57 points.
The key: the moment of Joao Félix, who has participated in 9 of Atlético’s last 17 goals.
The fact: Mallorca has accumulated seven consecutive league defeats and has conceded 17 goals at home this season. They have only won once in Atlético’s last four visits: two away wins, one draw and one home win in four games.
– Javier Aguirre: “We have to be as intense as Atlético de Madrid”.
– Diego Simeone: “The coach (Aguirre) has a great experience in world football, he knows the Spanish league very well, he knows what it is to suffer because he has had to be in other teams competing in the same way. I imagine a tough game, complex, difficult, stuck”.
The environment: Atlético’s visit and coach Javier Aguirre’s debut at the Visit Mallorca Estadi have been obscured by the controversy over Franco Russo’s expulsion against Getafe, which has ignited Mallorcanism, which will express its disagreement with whistles and handkerchiefs before and After the match.