Alejandro Hurtado has finally made things work with Celta Vigo. His side have returned to European football as they fought their way to 5th place in the 2033/34 season and will look to build on this over the coming season.
Will Alejandro Hurtado be able to manage his sides hectic schedule and produce another successful season? It will all depend on his young squad and whether they will be able to handle the pressure of having weeks with multiple matches and travelling across Europe.
As we have been with Celta Vigo for three full seasons now, it seems appropriate to speed things up a little with our post structure. We will now go through one season per post, which means the following article will reveal how Celta Vigo have performed in the entire 2034/35 season. Enjoy.
Celta Vigo’s rise under Hurtado
- Diego Moroni – Wolfsburg
- Luis Miguel Navarro – Eibar
- Mathias Pandolfo – Vallecano
- Hugo Galan – Oviedo
- Phillip Wolff – Arsenal
- Mario Maggio – Verona
We have let a few of our more senior members go this summer, including Celta Vigo academy graduates Luis Miguel Navarro and Hugo Galan. Unfortunately for them the club has outgrown them and as such they will be hoping to perform well at their new clubs.
We raised a total of £28M through sales this summer and have looked to invest this straight back into the first team.
We made just three signings for the first team to begin the year.
Mario Baixauli will replace outgoing Diego Moroni. Baixauli looks to be a solid Spanish goalkeeper with all of his key core stats at an acceptable level.
Potentially the key signing is Alejandro Cougo who will play as our defensive minded midfielder. This will allow some of our more creative players to express themselves freely with Cougo sitting deeper to protect the defence.
The third signing we made is Jules Ngombo (not shown above). He is a French left sided winger who, at the age of just 18, will play second fiddle to first choice winger Felix Gomez.
A Useful Start
The above formation helped to inspire a turn around in form at the end of the previous season and Alejandro Hurtado has decided to stick with the setup.
And it has proved partially successful as we won 5 of our opening 8 games in La Liga. However a 6-0 drubbing away to Real Madrid really dented our lofty aspirations and knocked us back down to earth.
1 loss in 16 (plus European progression)
A beautiful run of form saw us leap up the table to end up battling the likes of Athletic Bilbao, Sevilla and Malaga for the 4th Champions League spot. We also progressed through to the Copa del Rey Quarter Final after beating both Huelva and Lugo.
Despite not winning the first two European games in the group stages, Celta Vigo bounced back to win the remaining four matches to top the group and progress to the knockout stages.
A brilliant goalscoring run saw us score 17 goals in the six matches on our way to beating Standard, PSV and Legia to the top spot.
A Poor Run
A run of 12 matches between January and March saw us knocked out of both the Copa del Rey and Europa League. We were drawn against two good teams in Atletico Madrid (Copa del Rey) and Sporting Lisbon. But we came out second on both occasions.
In the league 4 matches in eight. This by no means was disastrous, especially when you consider we played Atletico Madrid, Athletic Bilbao, Real Madrid and Sevilla in those games. But when chasing a Champions League spot this run of form is not good enough.
Tinkering with our Tactic
With the central midfield being an area of huge strength and depth for Celta Vigo, Alejandro decided to abandon his system suited to wider players in favour of a more narrow formation as show below.
A narrow 4-3-1-2 formation, new to both Vigo and Alejandro Hurtado, could prove to be the difference between Europa League and Champions League for next season.
And indeed it was…
It took four matches before we were able to win with our new system. But once we had our first taste of victory we were not going to give it up easily, winning all remaining games in the season.
But was this enough to secure a 4th place finish?
Former player Mattias Pandolfo helped secure a win for out of form Vallecano against Athletic Bilbao. In our match we beat Zaragoza 4-1…
Yes! We made it to 4th spot and a Champions League placing for Alejandro Hurtado. It will be his first foray into Europe’s top competition.
What an incredible finish to an incredible season. Alejandro Hurtado can be pleased with both his players and himself. It took a brave man to adapt his tactic so close to the end of the season and to stick with it despite going winless in four was considered, by some, to be a rookie mistake.
Hurtado has many players to thank for the successes of the season just gone, and we will take a brief look at the core of the team. It is formed of some very talented wonderkids.
The Year of the Wonderkid
- Jules Ngombo (loanee)
- Angel Fabello
- Lubos Ulrich
- Hugo Santiago
- Francisco Javier Perez
- Stjepan Bonacic
- Henrique Canha
Over the course of the 2034/35 season we have seen 7 of our first team squad be described in the media as a wonderkid. A couple of the players have been considered a wonderkid over a long period of time (such as Santiago and Canha) whereas others seem to be on the threshold.
Alejandro Hurtado has built a very impressive Celta Vigo squad over his four years in charge. Moving forward, he will look forward to his first Champions League venture in his 20th season of management.
Can Vigo continue their progression and begin to break the Barcelona / Real Madrid hold on La Liga? It may take some years, but the progress made in just four years is very impressive after a slow start in Spain.
The plan with VivaGlobetrotting developed from winning each South American competition into winning the Champions League with Sevilla. But at present it wouldn’t seem right to leave Celta Vigo when we are becoming a bigger club than them. And so, despite Alejandro Hurtado’s ties with former club Sevilla, it seems entirely possible that we could end our series with a Champions League with Celta Vigo.
But let’s not forget, when we began at Deportes Puerto Montt in 2016 not many could have foreseen the rise of Alejandro Hurtado. He has gone from the depths of Chilean football to the highs of Champions League football. Who knows where he could be in another 20 years time?
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Thanks for reading Part 46 of VivaGlobetrotting. Our journey is developing very nicely and it will be so fun to play over the next few years with our young and talented squad.
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