Skip to main content

Hinchas y Jugadores - Celta Vigo with Joseph Sexton (3rd May, 2017)

Joseph Sexton is a Spanish football writer and is a staff writer for Marca. You can follow him on Twitter here.

Also, I would highly recommend his piece on Iago Aspas, you can read it here.

How long have you been a fan of Celta Vigo and what made you support them in the first place?

About six years now I guess, back when they were stuck in the second division. I didn't have a strong tie to any particular club at the time, and I started going out with a girl from my Vigo. On my first visit there, I went to a game at Balaídos, and the rest - as they say - is history!

Given the transfer windows and the squad that was assembled at the start of the season, is Celta Vigo where you want it to be?

I think so. It was always going to be challenge being in Europe, we had a short squad before the summer and Celta fans can remember all too well about 2004 when they reached the last 16 of the Champions League but also got relegated (Berizzo was playing for the team then). So mid-table and going as far as they ever have before in the Europa League makes for a fine season, ditto making the Copa del Rey semi finals. That's maybe the only disappointment, to go out at stage to Alavés having knocked Madrid out.

Of the signings made this season, which one worked out the best/had the most impact and why?

I think Pione Sisto has been very promising, also until that horrible injury Giuseppe Rossi was doing a fine job as back up.

What are the strengths and weaknesses of Celta Vigo this season? Any standout players?

The defense is still an issue this season. As much as the individual players shine, there can be a systematic thing where it all blows up. Orellana was playing brilliantly for us before he fell out with Berizzo and got sold. But definitely I think Daniel Wass had made a massive step up this term.

Obviously, though, Iago Aspas has been the standout player.

List some things you appreciate and some things you can’t stand about the club management.

I think behind the scenes the club has been run very well for some time now, the new sporting director had a good summer. My complaint is more about the city council than the club - they can't agree on the stadium issue - ownership, refurbishments, etc. It's gotten to the stage where the club has given notice (let's see how real the threat is) that they plan to vacate their municipally owned ground, and build an out of town stadium. The surround of the ground as much - indeed, more - than the current one is a real highlight of the match-day experience.

One issue I have (and this is common to many clubs in Spain) is the ticket prices. They are too high, given the relative level of income and unemployment, etc. Spanish clubs don't seem to get the Economics 101 concept of Price/Demand elasticity. They simply assume if the lower prices, the same amount of people will go more or less, and they'll lose money. I disagree. I know people who've had to give up their season tickets for financial reasons, and people who would go to more games if they could afford to.

What has the mood among the fans been during the campaign? Do you generally agree/disagree with them?

They can be a bit fatalistic. A bad start to the season, and they were worried about a repeat of that relegation season. There's a bit of a bipolar element. But I appreciate the level of emotion in the following, in so many Spanish provincial towns, the local club can get swamped by the Madrid/Barça fans. That's not the case at all in Vigo. There is a very strong and passionate support.

Are there any talented youngsters at the club that you expect to have a big future?

Of those who've seen a lot of first team action, definitely Sisto. But beyond that, Celta B are having a superb season. They are are top of their division in the (regionalized, third-tier) Segunda B. Watch this space.

If you could make one realistic signing for Celta Vigo this summer who would it be?

We buy well and no doubt the sporting director will have some names lined up. But I would be overjoyed if Nolito came back. After a promising start at Man City, he's fallen out of the picture. He enjoyed his time in Vigo, so I think a push should be made. Other than that I would to see try and sign Las Palmas' Roque Mesa. But he's playing for his hometown club, and the Canary Islanders are home-birds (and who could blame them!) so maybe he wouldn't fancy rainy Galicia!

Finally, predicted finish for Celta Vigo?

I think we'll finish where are now, comfortable midtable and likely top half. We have too much to do to claim a Europa League spot through the league placings- but in that competition, if we can make it through the second leg and into the semis - who knows?

A huge thanks to Joseph for taking the time to do this.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Francisco Pérez Pérez - the actual oldest player to have played in Spain (1st November, 2017)

I've always wanted to ask a football player: how much do you love your club? If you see your club go down, what are you willing to put on the line to see them go back up? The notion that "players will come and players will go, but the fans are the club" is one that is sadly true in what has become a money-filled sport. The story of a player sacrificing money and success for his club? That story is rare. That story is beautiful. This is that story. This is the story of a player who loved his club. His local club. It'll be a long time if and when someone beats his record. Francisco Pérez Pérez, also known as Chico, currently holds the record for being the oldest player to play in the Segunda B - 43 years and 93 days is the figure. That's a figure that second place Diego Rodríguez Fernández (41 years and 324 days) falls short of by a year and 134 days. I should also point out that the top 3 list for oldest players to play in any of the top three tier

Non-league Incider: Cray Valley Paper Mills 4-4 Punjab United Gravesend

Last game: 9th August: St Helens Town 3-0 Atherton Laburnum Rovers After ripping up my groundhopping calendar, mostly because I was determined to avoid overnight travel, and partly due to other commitments, there was a period of time where non-league football took a backseat. But that period did not last long. Because of course it didn't. Secretly, I'd loved travelling over ten hours back-and-forth to watch some 10th division football. And this was 9th division football in London. When I had gone to East Dulwich exactly a week back , I had commented on how the amount of graffiti struck me as I watched from on board a southeastern train. I was going the exact same way, but much further this time - then I had stopped at Denmark Hill, now I would have to go six stations further. The graffiti I had thought was so emblematic of south London quickly disappeared, as did the tall buildings desperately cluttered together. We, and by we I mean me, were going to the suburb

Who is Raúl Martín Presa, the Mickey Mouse? Part 1. (20th August, 2017)

José María Ruiz-Mateos was the head and main shareholder of Nueva Rumasa - the company that owned Rayo and other companies - mainly specializing in dairy products. (He wasn't the president of Rayo though - his wife, Teresa Rivero, was Rayo's president). In early 2011, the directors announced a debt of over 700 million euros, that it was on the verge of bankruptcy and that staff wouldn't be paid. And the players were visibly angry about it - captain Míchel assured the press that the club would continue fighting on the pitch, but the day after the announcement was made, six key players didn’t attend training. Veteran midfielder José María Movilla spoke on radio station SER about the situation, about the fact that he had only received seven of the last eighteen months of pay, about the fact that there were a few players who couldn't even afford car repairs. When Rayo Vallecano were about to earn promotion to La Liga despite all the odds - the players not being paid,