COVID-19 was the main protagonist of a season without fans in the stands at La Rosaleda or any other stadium in the silver division. In addition, the collective dismissal undertaken by the judicial administration drove a true tour de force by the sports management headed up by Manolo Gaspar, who put together a practically new team in record time.
Sergio Pellicer remained at the helm of the team. The lads kicked off the season with good results (4 wins in the first 7 matches), despite the difficulties they would overcome. One of the most evident was having just 18 professional players, which on many occasions conditioned the coach’s decisions. However, this also allowed him to turn his attention to several homegrown players who were up to the task. The consolidation of Juande and the regular participation of Ramón and Isma Casas, among many others, were just some of the standout performances.
Pellicer’s hard work, commitment and versatility, which proved chameleonic and unpredictable for the rival, gave an identity to a team well-armed in defence and dizzying in rapid transitions on the counterattack - more comfortable away from La Rosaleda with some excellent results. Away from home, Yanis and Joaquín on the wings and Luis Muñoz's punch from the second line stood out immensely. In the wide zone, especially with the implementation of the 1-4-1-4-1 formation, Escassi was the boss of midfield and Jozabed showed his talent as playmaker.
The feelings were positive and exciting, even in the usually elusive Copa del Rey. We got through two rounds, and it was a LaLiga Santander team, Granada CF, who eliminated the Blue and Whites in the third round of the tournament. Mid-season the team suffered two serious injuries, once again obliging the coaching team and La Cueva to dig deep. Two important players, Iván Calero and Pablo Chavarría, broke the cruciate ligament in their knees.
The team, remaining in mid-table positions in Liga SmartBank, not too far away from promotion playoff places and with a good cushion from the drop zone, continued to compete admirably. This was despite the circumstances on and off the pitch, with the lowest League salary of the 42 Spanish professional football clubs. After achieving the objective of permanence in advance, Pellicer announced he was leaving, ending his time at the Club with a 3-0 win on the final matchday against Castellón at La Rosaleda. A total of 53 points and 12th place in the table for Málaga CF, after 14 victories and 11 draws in 42 games.
Yanis Rahmani and Luis Muñoz, each with 5 goals, were the highest Malaguista scorers. Chavarría and Juande, with 4 goals, followed them in the ‘pichichi’ rankings.