Chori Castro: ‘We expect to get all three points’
Real Mallorca midfielder Chori Castro has admitted he is desperate to avoid the tension of a final-day relegation battle. The Islanders only survived on the final day of last season thanks to favourable results elsewhere and Castro has said after that terrible experience on and off the pitch they must get back to winning ways against Granada this weekend.
He told the club’s website: “We are committed that what happened last year won’t happen again. It affected us even in our dealings with family and friends. With three points on Sunday we hope to clarify things a little. We can’t be complacent because they have the strengths to do us damage and we need to play with our heads. We expect to go for the three points from the first minute and collect them.”
The one bright side for Mallorca in the 3-1 defeat to Sevilla on Monday night was only a second goal from open play all season for Tomer Hemed and he may be recalled to the starting line-up ahead of youngster Álvaro Giménez.
Granada are two points and three places worse off than Mallorca, but victory over Racing Santander last weekend maintained their six-point lead over the relegation zone and Ikechukwu Uche wants to travel to Real Zaragoza next weekend with survival almost secured.
He told AS: “We want to arrive in Zaragoza with survival half-achieved, but to do that we need to win in Mallorca. It will be a difficult game. Mallorca are coming off a defeat and are strong at home, but we are going with the mentality of trying to win the game.”
Allan Nyom, Borja Gomez and Carlos Martins all return from suspension for Abel Resino’s side and Odion Ighalo is expected to drop to the bench to allow Uche to play in his more natural role through the middle.
Real Mallorca squad for Granada
Goalkeepers: Aouate, Calatayud.
Defenders: Cendrós, Nunes, Ramis, Chico, Martí Crespí, Cáceres.
Midfielders: Pina, Martí, Tissone, Pereira, Nsue, Castro, Alfaro, Tejera.
Strikers: Víctor, Hemed, Ogunjimi.
Missing: Álvaro (injury), Kevin (fitness), João Victor, Zuiverloon, Bigas (all technical decision).