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Press conference

Loren: “We have a better team than a month ago”

Málaga CF’s sporting director held a press conference this Wednesday in the 'Juan Cortés' press room at La Rosaleda to assess the winter transfer window, which closed last Thursday 1st February. “The new players are going to contribute,” he said.

David Ferreiro, Haitam’s replacement

“Haitam's injury made us act, it was a position we had to cover. Among the players we were considering, the decision was to incorporate David Ferreiro, a player with experience. From a different profile, but the one that best covered what we wanted between now and the end of the season. Understanding the commitment to young people, this move will give us balance.”

The departure of Loren Zúñiga and the reinforcement upfront

“The Club tried to reverse the situation up until the last minute. We couldn't get any performance out of him, he asked us to release him and we had to cover the forward position. That position is complicated, we have considered many names of national and foreign players, who are competing well in the Second Division or Primera RFEF. We didn’t have the possibility of incorporating a player who met those characteristics. The signing of David Ferreiro modified the forward's attributes. He’s not up to many transitions, you can’t ask him for speed for a prolonged period. As much as we’ve been looking at that more positional forward, we sought other options. Within the parallel negotiations of up to 15 players, we understood that we could complement the speeds, the transitions, the vertical and deep play. We decided to incorporate Javi Avilés, for whom we were also interested in the summer. He can play in that position and complement us. He's not a goal scorer, but he plays with style. He is going to complement our attacking play and play as a centre forward, with Dioni or Roberto, he has set himself the challenge of scoring goals. He has speed and is deep, in certain games he can cause trouble.”

New competition on the right wing

“The third signing was Carlos Puga. He arrived as a free agent from Atlético de Madrid and is going to be an important complement to the right wing. We are happy with Jokin, but the season is going to be intense. The players need to be well rested and allow the coach to have options, so that there is real competition and the two compete face to face. The player understands this and has come here with that premise.”

The team has room for improvement

“We’re happy with the team. The players complement one another well. We have a better team than a month ago, the three signings are going to contribute. There are players who can still take a step forward in performance, the team has room. We can be calm and satisfied with what the Club has been able to sign. No player is going to promote the team alone, bringing out the best and complementing them will take Málaga as high as possible.”

Looking ahead to Málaga CF’s future

“Beyond today is tomorrow, thinking about it is a responsibility that we have in every aspect. Tomorrow becomes today. We wanted to improve and complement a team that was performing, but not mortgage future decisions with this market. That is why two players have arrived for five months and another on loan. We didn't want to make hasty decisions to try to resolve things in the short term. Maintaining the philosophy and model of the Club goes hand in hand with that, there are homegrown players who are showing positive signs and we didn’t want to deny them. Both David Ferreiro, Puga and Avilés complement what we have. We have incorporated active players, with immediate performance for these five months, who had continuity of training. We cannot afford to bring in players who will perform in two months.”

Available money for the market

“At no time did the administration set economic margins for us in terms of where to move. We looked for players and then consulted the finance department to see where we could go. The financial issue wasn’t a factor, the decisions were based on the players. The Club must be careful, not thinking about the future is one of the reasons why we are where we are. You have to have a short-, medium- and long-term plan. It has to be a performance club, but viable and stable. We believe in what we are building.”

Hope for the second round

“We hope to continue improving with the degree of consistency we’ve shown: we had a very good first phase, and another not so good. After the two defeats in Ceuta and Castellón the dynamic was broken, we hope that the team continues to grow, improve and the players continue to contribute from their position. It’s all about constantly improving and trying to be the best team in the second round, that’s the goal. There are two teams that are far above Group 1 and Group 2, with a model with properties and owners, we are far from what they manage. We manage a club model of generating our own assets to get Málaga out of where it is.”

Roberto is staying at Málaga CF

“Málaga told the agent that it was not the time, that it was not going to agree to the sale of the player. He has a clause and we weren’t going to move from there. Neither the player nor the agent have demanded to leave, only to transfer. Málaga was categorical, he is a key player in this project. The approach is to renew Roberto with Málaga, regardless of where we are.”

Strong attacking profile

“The team is very balanced, it has players on all lines. We have Roberto, who is one of the top scorers in the category, and Dioni, who has been a scorer all his life. Of the two attacking players, we have the pair with the second most goals. Roberto is going to continue scoring goals and Dioni is going to score more goals, we don't have to go crazy in that sense. There are second line players who have to contribute more goals and the improvement in attack is going to come from there.”

Contributing from day one

“Immediate performance. The winter transfer window is not planned as a long project. It’s true that Carlos Puga is a young player and has given a high performance in this category, we want to see him. Ferreiro is more veteran. The decisions have been made with an eye toward not compromising the Club. May the three players contribute from the outset to achieve Málaga's objective.”