Getafe struggled for goals last season as they eked out their place in La Liga for another year, but boss Cosmin Contra has again promised that the goals will return to the club. He might be right too if Alvaro Vazquez’s pre-season form is anything to go by. The former Swansea loanee bagged an impressive brace in Getafe’s 3-1 win over Cagliari last week and could be the talisman the club needs to ensure another season of safety.
Angel Lafita, Pablo Sarabia and Pedro Leon have stayed at the club, and should look to push on and contribute from midfield again, whilst the addition of exciting Colombian Fredy Hinestroza could draw some admiring glances if he hits the ground running.
Another Colombian looking to impress is Granada’s Jhon Cordoba. The youngster spent last season at Espanyol but didn’t impress sufficiently to earn an extended contract. That could work out well for Granada however, as Cordoba begins his second year in Spain with plenty of experience from his first.
Someone else with a point to prove is returning midfielder Fran Rico, who missed the entirety of the previous season due to injury. He’ll be desperate to show fans he merits a squad number after a horrendous 12 months. Another mention should go to Diego Mainz, who has plenty of experience and will surely lead Granada by example this season.
Undoubtedly reeling from the sale of star goalkeeper Keylor Navas, all eyes will be on his replacement. It is highly unlikely the new keeper will match Navas for athleticism or popularity, but nevertheless it will be down to one of Diego Marino or Jesus Fernandez to fill in for the Costa Rican.
It is unclear who will be first choice stopper, but the one making loud noises has been former Real Madrid player Fernandez. He has been vocal about proving himself, making statements about the current European Champions’ decision to let him go. All his talk would be in vain if he wasn’t confident in becoming Levante’s number one, so you’d have to assume JIM has made his decision.
Staying on the subject of goalkeepers, behind Navas and Manuel Neuer, Guillermo Ochoa was arguably the stand-out stopper in Brazil this summer. Malaga have recruited extremely well to palm off other suitors for the Mexican, especially considering they lost legend Willy Caballero to Manuel Pellegrini’s Manchester City.
Famed for his heroics in the Mexican goal, Ochoa’s shot-stopping will surely be called upon in La Liga as Malaga prepare for another tough season. Javi Gracia is at the helm nowadays, looking to do a better job than he did with Osasuna last season. He’s also brought in Liverpool’s Luis Alberto, who has the potential to bring Malaguistas to tears with performances reminiscent of Jeremy Toulalan.
If you haven’t kept up with any of Rayo Vallecano’s activity during the summer then you only have yourself to blame. If you have kept up with it all, you should be highly commended. Usually only experienced by teams who suffer relegation, Rayo have had an almighty turnaround of players, bringing 15 in and letting 10 go, not including those who were only on loan at the club last year.
Of the arrivals, Gael Kakuta, Derek Boateng, Manucho and Antonio Amaya stand out. Personally speaking, seeing Kakuta prove himself having been tipped as the next top player of our generation will be interesting. The 23-year-old has spent so much time out on loan it is debatable whether he actually has a future at Stamford Bridge, but he has his chance to impress at Rayo for the next 12 months.
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