La Liga’s sack race: Who's for the chop?

Atlético Madrid are not wholly unlike dogs in that they run to a completely different time scale as the rest of the known universe.

Whereas one human year supposedly represents seven for our canine buddies, just one week at the Vicente Calderón is roughly two months in the real, non-rojiblanco world.

This does beg the question of whether a transfixed Guti gormlessly gazing at shiny bits of paper for an hour feels just like a single minute for the mind-muddled midfielder.

Or whether 45 minutes of a Deportivo game is akin to a millennium of torment in a particularly nasty dimension of hell.

That was certainly the case for the poor saps from the sporting press that sat through the opening half of the Galician side’s game at Racing, on Sunday.

“Deplorable” muttered a dumbstruck Marca in their match report of the thrilling 1-0 away win.

It is this cunning concept that all time is relative that sees Quique Sánchez Flores at the top of La Liga Loca’s latest Sack Race chart, despite having only been manager at Atlético Madrid for what feels like a matter of minutes.

But in that snapshot of history, the former Valencia man has delivered just the one league win - Sunday’s 4-0 victory over Espanyol - and a passable display against Marbella in the Copa del Rey.

Anything less than three points for the latest Atlético chump against the mighty Xerez on Sunday and it could be curtains for poor Quique after just six weeks (12 months in Atleti-time) on the job.

Like having 10,000 spoons when all you want is a knife, it’s ironic that it's Xerez boss Cuco Ziganda second on the blog’s roll-call of ridicule.

His club have sunk to the faecally-festered bottom of la Primera having picked up just seven points from 12 games and managed a measly four league goals all season.

To be fair, there was nothing that the boggle-eyed boss could have done to stop the rot at one of the most poorly-prepared sides in the top flight - the aforementioned Atleti excluded, of course - and Xerez are also on the brink of going into administration.

However, as Real Madrid continue to demonstrate, rationality and reason have little influence in la Liga when it comes to managerial matters.

Although newly-promoted Real Zaragoza are sitting in 14th and will probably be comfortable at the end of the current campaign, there are rumblings in AS that Marcelino’s coaching alarm clock may already be about to ring.

The former Racing man took a voluntary drop in division by leaving Racing to take over at La Romareda in the summer of 2008 and managed to lead Zaragoza back to the top flight at the first attempt.

But AS is a-nudgin' and a-winkin' that just one win in the last nine league and cup games and the failure to beat the likes of Valladolid, Racing and Osasuna at home has prompted furious fans to hop on the back of their suffering subject.

There is a huddle of the hopeless sheltering for warmth just behind these three front-runners - a huddle made up of the tremendously uninteresting José Luis Orta at Tenerife and Juan Ramón López Muñiz at a slowly recovering Málaga.

La Liga Loca is praying for the latter to be given the chop, some time soon, simply because his name is unbelievably tough to type.

Sack Race Odds
Quique Sánchez Flores (Atlético)...........5-1
Cuco Ziganda (Xerez).............................6-1
Marcelino (Zaragoza)............................12-1
José Luis Orta (Tenerife).......................14-1
Juan Ramón López Muñiz (Racing)......14-1
Manuel Pellegrini (Real Madrid)............20-1
Michael Laudrup (Real Madrid future)...40-1

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