Pepe Mel, the new Málaga CF coach, was officially presented this Wednesday afternoon in the 'Juan Cortés' press room at La Rosaleda Stadium.
Firstly, he recognised the work of his predecessor, Pablo Guede, of whom he said that “luck wasn’t on his side, particularly with injuries in the same position, something that diminishes the team. I have seen a changing Málaga, wanting to do things well,” he continued.
Answering the same question, Pepe Mel said that he’s here to “do my bit and help the Club. I want the players to see me as a support and I will try to guide them on the right path. This is a long season,” he continued.
“This team needs to clear its head and there is no better remedy than doing so quickly, against Villarreal. We all need to win, the player must have the certainty that he can win and I want to instil that in him. I want the Málaga player to trust in what is around him. I ask them to look at themselves and see the level they’re at. They need to focus on football, the ball and doing things well,” he said about the first things he wants to convey to the team. In regard to the players, Pepe Mel added that “we’ve got some good names, but we have to be a recognisable team. The Málaga squad is very attractive for any manager.”
The Malaguista coach praised the Club's work in forming the team. “They’ve done a great job over summer, signing people of proven value in the division. I’m going to work with them, look at what needs to be improved, look at the defects and enhance the virtues. I want the players to work with enthusiasm and optimism that they’ll play a good game on Saturday and remember that the season is long. It’s going to be tough in two days. The players have to clear their minds. They’ve just come back from a difficult away game and trained in Tenerife. Now there’s a new coach, they feel responsible. Pablo did well, but sometimes things don't work out. Now we have to move on and focus on the next match. This is a young team, with good players and it won’t be easy. I want to see the attitude that they want to please and that they have a path forward, a roadmap to achieve things.”
Regarding the Entity, he stated that “Málaga doesn’t need any type of presentation, it has a history, a stadium and fans. I like the squad, since they contacted me, they’ve been sincere. I know that I’m arriving in the middle of a difficult situation, Málaga is not calm. The main thing is that the players believe in me and will let themselves be guided. With sacrifice, the fan is going to leave happy,” he added.
In relation to the team’s situation, following the unfortunate start to the league, he commented that they have to “try to minimise the team's defects so the rivals don’t take advantage. My job is to enhance the virtues this team has. By circumstance, we haven’t seen them very often, but there’s still time. We have nothing to hide, you can see the first training session. We’re going to work hard on important aspects. When you step out on to the pitch you have one point and Málaga have to win all three. I know of no other formula than to give all we’ve got and face up to things. I’ve experienced the same thing not far from here. The world of football knows what happened in Málaga. The fans want to see their team perform well, they want results. I am confident in my work, the players are trained to have a good season and that’s what we’re going to do. As well as being a great challenge, it’s an honour to be at Málaga CF.”
Pepe Mel wants a team that “piles the pressure on upfront, recovers quickly, stays close to the rival and knows how to keep the ball.” Although “the first thing we have to do is straighten out the situation. We have to lay the foundations, we can't talk about anything other than Villarreal B. What is white today is black tomorrow. We’re going to work hard, we’re going to try to win matches, starting with the first one, and then we’ll see,” he stated.