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Hinchas y Jugadores - Oviedo with John Mothershaw (15th May, 2017)

John Mothershaw is a Real Oviedo fan. He writes his own blog about the club, called OviedoFans.blogspot.co.uk, He mainly does Real Oviedo match reports on there.

His work also goes on the oviedistanorthwest.com site set up by Andy Huskinson. They have regular meet ups where a few of them get together for beer, food & Oviedo/football chat.

Finally, follow him on Twitter here.

A bit about yourself and your background

I'm a Stoke City season ticket holder & have been following Real Oviedo since November 2012. I've made 7 trips to Oviedo to watch them play now & enjoy writing about them & have done various podcasts on them

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

Since November 2012, the club were in desperate trouble and I spotted a tweet from Sid Lowe asking for people to buy shares to help keep them afloat. The thought of any club going bust is grim. How could I resist?

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

There was quite a few changes last summer with players & management staff so it's always hard to predict what to expect but looking at the teams who came down from La Liga last year & some other teams already in the division to be in with a great chance of the play offs is more than acceptable.

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

Without any shadow of a doubt David Costas who signed on loan from Celta Vigo in the winter has been the signing of the season. He has helped tighten up a leaky defense & has weighed in with some important goals as well. He looks a class act & hopefully we can sign him permanently.

What are the strengths and weaknesses of Real Oviedo this season? Any standout players?

The strengths are the home form, we are only behind Levante in terms of points gained at home. We have three natural finishers in the team & also have players in other areas of the pitch who chip in with goals & assists like Susaeta & Costas. Weaknesses are the away form. We don't seem to get going away & are often a goal behind before we get going. I'm now of the belief we may as well just be ultra aggressive away from home as our tactic of keeping it tight & hoping to nick one on the break hasn't worked. Set pieces have also been our undoing at times although that has improved since the arrival of Costas.

List some things you appreciate and some things you can’t stand about the club management. Rant away :)

Haha, as above really just the approach to away games really. I can understand the tactic to a certain extent as with the three goal scorers we have if we keep a clean sheet we are always liable to score but it for whatever reason hasn't worked away from home. I think possibly there is a lack of pace to play the counter attack system. It's a slight grumble though as I'm absolutely convinced Fernando Hierro is the right man for the job. The home form & performances have been superb & if we don't go up this year well certainly come back stronger next year, the players seem to like him & he seems have the respect of everyone at the club as someone of his status should do.

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

I think the overall mood is optimistic & the fans are behind what Hierro is trying to do, fans in general are becoming more & more impatient especially with the increase in social media & of course there are rants of frustration after away losses but overall people are still firmly behind Hierro.

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

On a recent trip to Oviedo I was fortunate enough to go & watch the B team play in a Tercera division (4th tier) match against CD Covadonga and they were impressive. Two players stood out to me & they were Carlos Nuñez & David Álvarez. I'm always confident in the young players coming through though as the club has a great track record of bringing them through.

If you could make one realistic signing for Real Oviedo this summer who would it be?

That's a tricky question as I'd imagine the caliber of player will be dependent on what division we are in. I'd go with getting David Costas though on a permanent deal. He is a player we should be looking to sign no matter whether we go up or not. You'd hope should we go up, then Hierro could put his contacts at Real Madrid to further use & get one or two fringe players in on loan.

Finally, predicted finish for Oviedo?

I think we will squeeze into the play offs as our home games are all winnable. It could well go to the last game of the season though. We may just need to get something away at Elche on the last day.

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