The writing had been on the wall for a long time and some were surprised that he had in fact lasted so long. Results were poor. Four wins and 6 draws were just not good enough. Joaquín Caparrós had to go. This evening on the club’s website and on his own Facebook account both sides admitted that the time had come to end the relationship. In October 2011, the former Athletic Club and Sevilla Coach walked through the doors at RCD Mallorca. It was a club in trouble but most expected the man who had brought through the likes of Sergio Ramos, Muniain and Javi Martínez could pull off another miracle but alas it was not to be.
Caparrós came when Laudrup had had enough of all the in-fighting that happens at the club. Caparrós is one of La Liga’s most liked managers. Everyone roots for him and when Mallorca started the season well most were hoping for a European spot but then things turned sour. Poor result after poor result and things just kept getting worse. Boardroom fights that were supposed to be over, started all over again. There are those that say that maybe Joaquín is relieved that he had left the jungle. But how bad are things at Mallorca?
The club are in debt, the board members all hate each other and the ground gets emptier and emptier. Loyal fans fear that should the club go down that they may go out of business and they aren’t like Real Oviedo who ended up being bought by fans all over the world. But, Mallorca are their own worse enemy and here are a few examples of how they don’t help themselves.
A few years back I went to Mallorca. I wanted to see a game but getting information was difficult but I then eventually made my way to the ground and tried to get a ticket. I was told the cheapest was €80. It was clearly a scam, the club saw a tourist and thought they would get as much as they could out of me. I decided to watch the game in a bar and as I sat, knocking back a cold beer all I could see was a sea of red, a see of red empty seats. But there are more personal examples.
About 6-7 years back, this writer attended an event at the Vicente Calderon. The event was organised by Atlético and there were representatives from clubs all over Spain in attendance. A friend, who worked with a company that was organising the event for Atlético had invited me and I got to speak to some very interesting people. One was a representative of Mallorca. After some chitchat I asked the gentleman why Mallorca did nothing to promote itself at its airport to tourists. Mallorca was doing nothing to stand out and attract visiting tourists. The Mallorca gentleman turned and looked me in the eye and said, ‘Why would we do that? Real Madrid don’t do it so why should we?’ Here we have a Mallorca employee comparing his club to Real Madrid! Nine time European Champions and Galaticos giant Real Madrid! A few weeks back at Rayo, I saw this gentleman still working at the club and the first thought that came into my head was, god help them.
These are only two examples of the chaos and poor management that exists at Mallorca. Caparrós has gone and Bernd Schuster is being rumoured as a possible replacement. Caparrós won’t be out of work for long and Mallorca still have games to survive and they may do so but they may regret in the future letting go of one of their best Coaches.
Around the Grounds
Diego Costa is quickly becoming the most hated man in Spain. At Atlético he is becoming a club legend. Against Real Betis he grabbed the headlines as Los Beticos decided that they had enough of his bullying and decided to give him a taste of his own medicine. He still managed to score, coming off the bench and Atlético won their 20th home game in a row. Getafe who had their website hacked again and had a picture of a penguin for over an hour on their home page beat Deportivo at home 3-1.
The other clubs in Madrid didn’t do so well. Real Madrid really hate the south. Their fourth defeat in Andalusia this year. Against Granada, Ronaldo scored an own goal, Granada’s only shot on target. Rayo Vallecano lost at Sevilla. After equalising with a Chori penalty, Negredo got one back just four minutes later.
A huge win for Osasuna against fellow strugglers Celta Vigo. Espanyol beat Levante 3-2 as Aguirre continues to impress and gets the headlines he deserves. Zaragoza got a very important point against Málaga.
Hay Liga! Well not really but Atlético close the gap to nine points. Ever Banega who turned up to training midweek a little worse for wear grabbed all the headlines for the right reasons. A draw against Barca shows that Valencia are coming out of their slump and getting themselves together. A Champions League spot isn’t out of the question.