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10.11.2007 11:12

Getafe are on the up

Jesús Carrillo

Michael Laudrup message if beginning to make it through at Getafe as los Azulones have hit a purple patch to pull themselves away from the relegation zone with some impressive performances.

Barça have a good history in the Coliseum Alfonso Pérez since the club returned to the top flight in 2004-05, with the Blaugrana winning twice and drawing the other in the previous three meetings between the two teams.

This summer there were many changes made to the playing and coaching staff at the club, but the team still made a poor start to the campaign before seeing an upturn in their fortunes in recent weeks.

Turning the corner

Despite the bad start, that saw them win just two points from their opening seven matches, Getafe have now recorded two consecutive victories, against Athletic Bilbao at home and Osasuna away, and have moved out of the bottom three for the first time. Added to that, they secured an impressive away day win in the UEFA Cup as they defeated English giants Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane.

Following the trend

Club president, Ángel Torres, is accustomed to trying out former players who are looking to break into coaching for the first time in Spanish football. The Getafe supremo's plan worked well with the club's two previous trainers as he gave Quique Sánchez Flores the chance to impress, while Bernd Schuster had not coach in la Primera before.

Laudrup was coach of Danish side Brondby for four seasons before being offered the opportunity to return to Spain and he brings with him a wealth of expereince both on the pitch and in the dug-out.

Busy summer

On the playing front, Getafe brought in eight players over the summer as they snapped up goalkeeper Óscar Ustari, defenders Cata Díaz, Signorino and Mario, to bolster the midfield Pallardó and Pablo Hernández were signed and Kepa Blanco and Ikechukwu Uche came in up front.

To counter-balance the new arrivals, Alexis went to Valencia, Daniel Güiza joined Mallorca, Paredes left for Real Zaragoza, Vivar Dorado signed for Valladolid and Verpakovskis moved on to Dinamo Kyiv.

Same spine

Despite the great deal of activity in the transfer market, the backbone of the Getafe team is the same as last season. Roberto Abbondanzieri is still in goal, Catalan defender David Belenguer and full-backs Cortés and Licht play regularly.

In midfield are Manu del Moral, Sousa and Mario Cotelo, who were favourites of Schuster, while only the forward positions have chaned with Kepa and Uche forming the new strike partnership.
Getafe are on the up
Euro adventure
After three consecutive years in the top flight, Getafe qualified for the UEFA Cup for the first ever time in their history when they finished as runners-up to Sevilla in the Copa del Rey. Against all the odds, Laudrup guided his side to victory against Tottenham Hotspur in what proved to be the defeat that saw the hosts' manager, Martin Jol, sacked. In the previous round, Getafe, beat Twente on away goals to make it through to the group stages.

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