Celta Vigo to avoid La Liga relegation


Celta Vigo look to have already done enough to secure their La Liga status, after a brilliant turnaround in form in recent weeks moving them up to 15th in the table.

Twelve points from their last seven games has seen them move away from the relegation zone, with three matches still to play.

Fans will not be happy until their safety is confirmed, but they will be getting increasingly confident of remaining in the top flight for the 2019-20 campaign.

Manager Fran Escriba has looked to play down hiss own role in their run of form, preferring to focus on building his player’s confidence ahead of the end of season run in.

However his stabilising effect at the club cannot be understated, after he was installed as the Galicians fourth permanent manager in just under 12 months – back in March.

He has injected life into a side that had looked incapable of turning their situation around, with changes in defence, which have seen Southampton loanee Wesley Hoedt, Lucas Olaza and Gustavo Cabral come into the back four – and results improve quickly.

Alongside tightening up at the back, the other key figure at the club is skipper Iago Asapas – who is arguably more important then Escriba.

The former Liverpool man has seen his season wrecked by injury, with a breakdown in March viewed as the end of his season, however both he and Escriba have worked hard to get him back fit.

One of Escriba’s first acts as manager was to instruct the club’s medical staff to create a tailored recovery plan to get Aspas back on the pitch before the end of the campaign – and the 31-year old has reaped the rewards.

Six goals in six La Liga games since the arrival of Escriba has spearheaded their push away from the bottom three and they will be hopeful of maintaining their two point gap between now and the end of the season.

Aspas picked up an injury in the final minutes of the weekend draw at Leganes, and is expected to miss this weekend’s visit of league champions Barcelona.

However, with Ernesto Valverde expected to field a second string side due to their Champions League commitments, Celta may even be hopeful of a positive result.

Aspas’ participation will be assessed in the next week, but given the change in fortunes, Escriba will be confident they can survive without him.

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