Deportivo La Coruna coach Javier Irureta is considering giving a debut to 19-year-old Carlos Pita for tonight’s opening Group A match against Olympiakos.
Pita has been drafted into the Deportivo squad after injuries to Aldo Duscher and Mauro Silva created a vacancy in the Depor midfield.
“We will have a final training session on the morning of the match,” Irureta said yesterday.
“After that, I will make the decision who will play instead of Mauro Silva or Duscher. Right now it looks like I have to decide between Scaloni and Pita.”
Although they start the match as favourites, Irureta has warned his side that tonight’s match will not be a walkover.
“They have many internationally experienced players like [Gabriel] Schurrer, Rivaldo, [Yiannis] Okkas, [Antonios] Nikopolidis or Giovanni,” said Irureta. “They are dangerous for their counterattacks, so we have to exert so much pressure that they cannot build those counterattacks.”
Deportivo have had a disappointing start to the new season; they struggled to overcome Shelbourne in the Champions League qualifying round and have taken one point from their opening two Primera Division matches.
The poor start by the Spanish side has not gone unnoticed by the Olympiacos coach Dusan Bajevic, who described tonight’s opponents as “a wounded animal”.
Bajevic said: “I know that the two first games of Deportivo in the Spanish league were not good. But this does not make our job easier. To meet a wounded animal is always more dangerous.
“They are missing players but we have not played an official match so far. So both teams have their disadvantages.”
Olympiakos will give a debut to Deportivo old boy Rivaldo, as they look to improve upon their lamentable away record in this competition which includes seven defeats in eight matches played in Spain.