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David Albelda: New Beginnings

David Albelda appointed as Catania boss
Started on 24 July 2014 by ollyewest
Latest Reply on 28 July 2014 by ollyewest
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David Albelda becomes Catania boss

There was shock today as Italian side Calcio Catania appointed David Albelda as their new manager.

Albelda,36, is unacquainted with Italian football, having neither played nor managed in it and being unable to speak the language. However, he told reporters at his unveiling: "I am not worried about the challenges of Italian football. I did careful research of Catania and I am ready for this challenge. I have already started taking Italian classes."

Supporters have welcomed this new approach to management by the board, as Catania have gone through an alarming number of managers over the last ten years. It looks like David Albelda will be aiming for consistency more than anything else in his first managerial adventure.
ollyewest's avatar Group ollyewest
9 yearsEdited
Petkovic sold to Real Madrid

Catania starlet Bruno Petkovic has been sold to Real Madrid for a fee in the region of £5.5 million pounds, the Spanish club has confirmed.

Petkovic, one of the brightest talents in Serie A, was also in talks with Atletico Madrid, making this move all the sweeter for Los Blancos' supporters.

"I am thrilled. Real Madrid is my boyhood club and this is like a dream. I would like to thank Catania for all they did for me and I look forward to this new step in my career," Petkovic told supporters. It is believed Catania manager David Albelda will look to invest this cash in a striker and a left back.
Catania strengthen with new signings

Catania have confirmed the signings of Bryan Oviedo and Alejandro Rodriguez for a combined outlay of £3.1m.

Oviedo found himself out of favour at Everton. Deemed surplus to requirements, he was transfer listed, where David Albelda snapped him up for £1.6m. Rodriguez was signed for £1.5m from Cesena.

Former Valencia midfielder Albelda said to the gathered press: "These are two impressive signings that signal our intent to push on this year. I am delighted they have signed for us and they provide excellent competition for the squad."
ollyewest's avatar Group ollyewest
9 yearsEdited

This was our pre season. I was very impressed with the squad as a whole, as I experimented throughout. Gonzalo Bergessio got 4 goals, Sebastian Leto got 3. The highlight has to be that win over Leverkusen, who are in the Champions League. Our first game is Inter Milan away, so we will need to be sharp.
Decent preseason and some nice transfer activity. Used to love watching Albelda play for Valencia, good luck with Catania!
Catania stun Nerazzurri in 2-1 win

Catania pulled off a shock by defeating Inter Milan at the Giuseppe Meazza in what was David Albelda's first game.

Inter never really created any clear cut chances until the final 10 minutes. Catania, by contrast, were utterly ruthless. When Mateo Kovacic senselessly hacked down Gino Peruzzi inside the box, he referee had no choice but to give a penalty and Sebastian Leto smashed it past Handanovic. Inter were restricted to long range efforts and when Catania got the ball they broke incisively. This time, Fabian Monzon was the architect as he fired in a lovely cross that Gonzalo Bergessio took pleasure in dispatching. Half Time came with an abject Inter 2-0 down.

After half time, it was simply more of the same and Catania should have had their third when an excellent low ball in from Peruzzi was fired narrowly over by substitute Alejandro Rodriguez. Inter could not fashion chances of any description and it took until the 88th minute to make any sort of impression. A mishit cross from Yuto Nagatomo hit the Catania post and fell kindly for Kovacic. However, Gino Peruzzi got there first and fell on his sword, scoring an own goal that made the game look tighter than it was. However, Catania held on to record an excellent debut win for Albelda.

"Our tactics were spot on today. We could have had 3 or 4. I am delighted that our work on the training ground has come to fruition," said the new boss.

Catania will look to continue this form when they take on Parma next week.
2014-07-25 00:32#186196 Neal : Decent preseason and some nice transfer activity. Used to love watching Albelda play for Valencia, good luck with Catania!

Thanks. I loved your Inter Milan story and your Roma one has inspired me. I'm hoping I can get Albelda back to Los Che as a decorated manager.
Brilliant result against Inter, good luck for the rest of the season :)
2014-07-25 12:40#186279 brownymcfc : Brilliant result against Inter, good luck for the rest of the season :)

Thanks mate, appreciated.
ollyewest's avatar Group ollyewest
9 yearsEdited
September Results

This was a really great start, one that I didn't see coming. We're scoring goals for fun and the defence is (mostly) solid. Against Parma, we conceded first but came back and won it in the 90th minute, which was fully deserved and very pleasing. We went to Cagliari and hung on after a wondergoal from midfielder Sergio Almiron. Then we romped past Fiorentina, which was surprising and pleasing. As for the Atalanta game, I blame myself as I split up the partnership of Rolin and Bellusci. We finished the month with what I can see becoming a routine 3-0 home win over Bologna.
Albelda to take on Juventus without key men

David Albelda will have to make do without the services of three defenders for the crunch match with Juventus. Gino Peruzzi, Fabian Monzon and Giuseppe Bellusci have all been ruled out of the tie due to suspension.

"Obviously it's a big loss, but we have Bryan (Oviedo), Nicola (Spolli) and Pablo (Alvarez) to step in," said the Valencia boss.

Juventus, however, are not doing too well themselves this season. They languish in 12th, with rumours abound that they are lining up Max Allegri to replace Antonio Conte as boss. All in all, this should make for a thrilling match come Wednesday.
Catania gain creditable draw to top league 10 games in

The Serie A table is one that very few predicted at the start of the season. After a 1-1 draw with Juventus, Catania have 20 points and jointly top the table with Cagliari. Napoli are a point behind in third and a further point behind, shockingly, are Verona with 18.

Juventus dominated proceedings against Catania but could not convert their superiority into goals and it was Catania who drew first blood through Gonzalo Bergessio. Etnei only held their lead for 20 minutes, before Mauricio Isla emphatically equalised. Despite numerous Bianconeri chances after the break, that is the way the game finished.

"I am proud of the boys. The defensive efforts were excellent," was the brief comment given by Albelda.
Squad analysis


I have an excellent first choice in Andujar. He has won us points on his own this season, especially when we're struggling to hold on to a victory/draw. As far as backups go, Frison is untested, so I'll be looking to give him a runout in a Coppa Italia match.


This is the club's strong point. On it's day, the backline of Oviedo, Rolin, Bellusci and Peruzzi has been impenetrable. However, very rarely have they all played. Oviedo has been great but he can't play every match, and his rotation option Fabian Monzon is a liability. He already has two red cards this year, which I fined him for, and now he wants to leave. The centre back partnership has been encouraging, with Bellusci and Rolin looking very solid. However, I don't trust Spolli or Legrottaglie, and Gyomber is too inexperienced. I will be looking to sign backup in January. Peruzzi has also been sent off, for an awful challenge at that, and he has missed a month through injury, but his rotation option Pablo Alvarez has impressed.


This is a problem area. We lack in depth in midfield. We need a ball winning midfielder, as Tachtsidis is playing virtually every game. However, we have an abundance of ball playing midfielders, with Almiron and Guarente more than capable of dominating a game. We missed Sebastian Leto, but it gave Keko a chance to prove his worth, which he more than did. Castro and Barrientos softened the Leto blow too.


Right now, Gonzalo Bergessio is having the lion's share of starts, although Lopez and Rodriguez will be getting football soon. Bergessio is unreal. He runs all day, takes chances regularly, and due to high natural fitness is always around the 100% mark for the next match. At the time of writing, Bergessio has 4 goals in 7 games, Maxi Lopez has 3 in 6, and Rodriguez hasn't scored in his only appearance thus far.
October Results

As you can see, not as impressive for October. We started the month as we finished the last, with a gritty 2-1 win over Genoa. We then drew with Lazio, a game we should have won but for a horrible mistake by Bellusci, very unlike him. We then collapsed with a shocking 1-0 defeat to Chievo where both Peruzzi and Monzon got sent off and Bellusci reached his yellow cards limit. All of which made the draw with Juventus very pleasing indeed. In November, we take on AC Milan and Napoli, so we'll need to be on top form.
November and December results

I am stunned. Literally, stunned. How we managed to not only go undefeated through November AND December but win the majority of matches I will never know. Maxi Lopez scored the only goal against AC Milan, an excellent strike, and we hung on. But Napoli was the highlight of November. We scored through Lopez, then Mertens pegged us back before we found a previously hidden upper gear. Barrientos scored from a brilliant Leto cross then Bellusci from a Monzon corner. We then beat Sassuolo 2-1, a game in which both of my strikers scored, which was immensely pleasing. My Man of The Month was Maxi Lopez for getting a goal a game for November.

December wasn't quite as good but was still great. We were lucky to beat Udinese, having been 1-0 down in the 80th minute, then two bore draws against Livorno and Sampdoria, one where we should have won (Livorno), one where we should have lost (Sampdoria). We finished the month with a fantastic 2-1 win over Roma. Now for January, and the transfer market...

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