A bad break for two La Liga bosses

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Poor José Aurelio Gay isn’t going to be enjoying the next few days a great deal, despite the break from all the lunacy of La Liga, mainly because his time-out could well become a permanent one with the Zaragoza manager set to be fired any second now. Probably whilst this blog is being written, just to be annoying. 

In fact, there were rumours poking about Spain, on Monday, that Gay had already been outed - as it were - but the trainer insisted that he was “still the Zaragoza manager, for the moment. No-one has been in contact with me to tell me otherwise.”

Zaragoza are currently lying second-from-bottom of the table, with just three points after a bit of a sorry start to the season. The side’s luck is so bad at the moment that what could have been a Braveheart, coming-from-behind, rousing encounter for Gay’s men, on Saturday, ended up piling yet more pressure on the coach and his team.

2-0 down in the second half in their home tie against Sporting and Zaragoza really were in trouble. But then Florent Sinama Pongolle popped up with a lovely strike to pull one back for Zaragoza.

The Frenchman then decided to celebrate the goal with a ‘button-it!” gesture to an understandably irate crowd - a cunning move which ensured that the supporters’ charming chant of “Sinama Die!” barely ceased even when the Primera poacher grabbed a second to save a precious point for his team.

The former Liverpool forward then faced the fury of supporters dismayed by the thought of a second successive relegation battle by having it out with some angry types outside the ground before the police stopped either Sinama or even the supporters getting themselves getting a good old kicking by standing in the way.

Deportivo’s boss, Miguel Angel Lotina, is another manager who is under pressure but who is feeling a little more secure over his immediate future, claiming on Sunday night that “only the mediocre resign”. 

LLL spent a couple of minutes spying on the coach of the bottom-of-the-table boredom-bringers, on Sunday night, as he paced up and down in the Real Madrid mixed zone with a phone clamped to his ear, sporting a face like a peed-off pug dog after the 6-1 defeat.

Having at first feared the worst for Lotina’s immediate future, the blog then remembered that the notoriously glum manager always sports the expression of someone obligated by job to watch Deportivo’s games more than once - something that would push normal folk into developing a taste for arsenic and taking baths with toasters.


It’s big change time in Tuesday’s Marca, with the paper having pushed their usual story concerning the dreamy greatness of José Mourinho all the way to page 24. “The first big win of the Mourinho era has gone down very well with the leaders of the club” notes the paper approvingly.

However Marca is still insisting that Cristiano Ronaldo has scored four goals this season despite the Spanish league’s own website awarding the apparently contentious Real Sociedad free-kick strike to Pepe, whose tiny head the ball bounced off in the 2-1 win.

Mourinho has been bumped down the pecking order by the only thing more important to Marca than Real Madrid - and that’s Marca. The paper has dedicated most of the day’s edition to its annual award ceremony for “the most desired (prizes) in football” and hands over a good 700 pages to photographs of plump, self-satisfied, grey men in suits greeting each other, on Monday night, in that clamping each other’s arms down, Alpha Male manner that's so popular in Spain.

Tuesday’s edition also printed the full speech given at the event by the paper’s most peculiar director, Eduardo Inda - a discourse that must have lasted a good three hours judging by the length of the text and featured an ambitious section when he compared Messi to Mozart.

Sport have been keeping busy, too, by poking their finger into where exactly Barcelona have been going wrong this season with Tuesday’s revealing headline of “the problems are at home.”

And, to be fair, this is about as good as it is going to get, this week, with la Liga going into a bit of a lull.