Garagarza: We don't appreciate just what a major achievement it would be to retain our top-flight status for another season

Eibar's director of football offered a positive assessment of the club's activity in the January transfer window


05/02/2018 14:25

Speaking today in a press conference held to reflect on the club's business in the January transfer window, SD Eibar's director of football, Fran Garagarza, insisted that the club's target is still to secure top-flight survival, stressing that "We don't appreciate just what a major achievement it would be to retain our top-flight status for another season when you consider the budgets" that the rest of the LaLiga clubs are working to.

"We have to continue picking up as many points as possible because 32 isn't enough to keep you up. It's true that we're in fine shape and are close to achieving our target. We're on a really good run and the value of the squad has increased greatly and is currently very high. What's more, we've got a very highly valued coach here".

In reference to the tough spell that Eibar endured at the start of the campaign, Garagarza noted "One of our strengths was that we adopted a calm and patient approach". "We were more busy than worried and tried not to interfere, help out and transmit a calmness right throughout the club. We were confident and had belief in the job being done. This is a very stable club and the president and the board have always gone about their work in a very calm manner".

Garagarza went on to heap praise on coach José Luis Mendilibar, commenting that "We have to be thankful for how the coach has raised the profile of the squad, he's a real asset to this club".

With regards to the transfer window, the club's director of football firstly inisisted that "In previous windows we've rightly being on the receiving end of some setbacks because we haven't gone about things in the right way, but this time round, we have to thank everyone for their work in ensuring that there were no issues".

"Two of the three signings (Fabián Orellana and Pape Diop) are getting game time, are playing a key role and have brought additional competition to the squad. I think that we acted swiftly and did well in this window. The overall assessment will be made later on, in May time".

During this window, Eibar have drafted in the aforementioned Diop and Orellana, as well as Serbian defender Vukašin Jovanović. In terms of outgoings, the following players have headed out on loan: Alejandro Gálvez (UD Las Palmas), Cristian Rivera (Barcelona B) and Thiago Bebé (Rayo Vallecano), whilst Nano Mesa has moved to Sporting Gijón after his loan at Levante UD was cancelled.

Eibar currently boast a 24-man squad, the average age of which is 29.

Garagarza also offered details of the transfer activity involving the club's feeder team, which competes in Segunda B (the Spanish third tier), and referred to the signing of Sergio Camús, whilst stating that Iker Amorrortu's contract has been cancelled and Txaber has been loaned to Portugalete. Another loan ranger, Iñigo Susaeta, who was at Anaitasuna, has returned to join for the Eibar feeder team's reserve side, who play in the Regional Division.

In terms of the prospect of renewing the contracts of those players that are out of contract in June, which applies to seven members of the squad, Garagarza noted "Our duty is to act as soon as possible". "We're working calmly on this internally. We're relaxed and are making progress. The players that are out of contract are free to speak to other clubs, but the important thing to highlight here is the great commitment being shown by all of them towards the team".