Liga BBVA | J18 | Hércules CF vs Club Atlético de Madrid
Date: January 10, 2010
Time: 2100 CET
Stadium: Rico Pérez
Quique Sánchez Flores knows that his team needs a victory in Alicante over Hércules to achieve the goal that had been set, which was to make it to 30 points before the end of the first half of league play. The head coach stated that “as long as we reach and even exceed that amount, we’ll have chances to accomplish our season-long goal. Perhaps we’re lacking 3 or 4 points, which is what we’d need to be more comfortable. Now we’re in the group of chasers and have a chance to finish the year in Champions spots.”
The manager reviewed his team’s upcoming fixtures and assured that “every game is important. We have to define our goal in La Liga and the Cup doesn’t give you a chance to breathe. We’re going from match-to-match. We’ll see how we’re feeling when the games are over and we’ll always try to put on the best side. That’s our idea.”
Quique Sánchez Flores played down the importance of Real Madrid having one more day than his team to get ready for the Cup. “We can’t think about that. It gives off the feeling that it’s not the fairest thing. The best would have been to play on Sunday, but we can’t focus on it. We want to go into every match in good shape and we’ll try to do that.
“Our priority is the match against Hércules. They’re a very aggressive team at home. They’re very uncomfortable to play against, are strong in front with veteran players who are contributing plenty. They’ve been very decisive and we’ll have to take precaution. We’ll have to play with intensity and focus,” he asserted.
Regarding the physical state of Forlán and the possibility of calling up Elías, Quique highlighted that “the Uruguayan isn’t at 100%, but he’s been called in. He’s improved. He doesn’t feel his best. Elías has been included, but we still don’t have the transfer, although we could get it at some point on Monday. Besides, it’s good for him to get to know the way the team works, trips, meetings, etc…”
With respect to the possibility of signing Juanfran in the next few days, Quique emphasized that “I’m not going to speak about players until they’re at Atlético de Madrid. When they are, we’ll make assessments. I’m only paying attention to the group of players that I have.”
The Atlético de Madrid manager also spoke about playing on Monday. “Honestly, I like to open up the week, not wrap it up. I like to win the match and put pressure on the opponent. I think that our fans deserve some respect. Playing on Mondays is uncomfortable for our supporters. The greatness of our organization means that we don’t deserve to play onthat day. Playing on Mondays is bothersome. Playing on Sundays at noon is another matter. My mind is open. That would guarantee us filling the stadium. It’s a festive and special atmosphere. All kinds of people would come and a football atmosphere would be created. I’ve played in Vallecas and with the national team at that time. In Spain football is prepared for everyone except the fans,” Quique wrapped up.
Quique Sánchez Flores has released the list of 20 players who will travel to Alicante to take on Hércules. The big inclusions in the matchday roster is the return of Forlán, who suffered an ankle sprain against Racing, and the first call-up for Elías, although his transfer has still not been approved. The team is hoping that it is in the next few hours. The team will head for Alicante on a charter flight at 7 pm and stay at Hotel NH Alicante. The squad will return directly after the match.
The list is formed by the following players:
13 De Gea.
3 Antonio López.
14 Filipe Luis.
18 Álvaro Domínguez.
4 Mario Suárez.
8 Raúl García.
11 Fran Mérida.
12 Paulo Assunção.
49 Alberto Perea.
10 Kun Agüero.
22 Diego Costa.