Thursday, August 25, 2016

Deportivo La Coruna Greatest All-Time Team

1999-2000 La Liga Champion
Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

Real MadridBarcelonaValencia,
Atletico MadridSevillaAtletic Bilbao, 
Deportivo La Coruna  Real Sociedad,
Real BetisReal ZaragozaEspanyol

This is my selection of a 25 member all-time team for the club.  The number 25 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the Champions' League.

Founded in 1906,  Deprtivo La Coruna has many great players who played for them.  However, their greatest era did not come until the 1990's.  Known as "Super Dor", the club won their first La Liga title in the season 1999-2000.  They also won three Copa Del Rey's: 1995, 2000 and 2002.

Team
GK: Juan Acuna (Spain)
Acuna was one of the best Spanish keeper in his times. From 1941 to 1951, he won four Zamora trophies, tied for 2nd in the number of awards wonHe played 278 times for Deportivo La Coruna.
Juan Acuna
GK:  Jacques Songo'o (Cameroon)
He was voted the 6th African best keeper of the Century behind Bell and N'Kono.  He appeared in over 200 games for Deportivo La Coruna and won Ricardo Zamora award for 1995-1996.  Although he was younger than Bell and N'Kono, his international career was limited by playing behind two of the best keepers in African history.  He was on the WC team in 1990, 1994, 1998 and 2002.  He only started at the WC Finals in 1998.

GK: Jose Molina (Spain)
Joined Atletico Madrid in 1995, he helped the club win a Double (league and Copa del Rey) in his first year, going on to miss only two league matches in four seasons combined.  However, after Atletico Madrid relegated after the 1999-2000 season, he moved to Deportivo La Coruna and lasted until 2006.  He played one season with Levante.  He made his national team debut in 1996 as an outfielder because the team had used up all the subs.  He also went to Euro 1996 and France 1998, but never played a game.  He played the game vs Norway at Euro 2000.

RB: Manuel Pablo (Spain)
He started with Las Palmas.  He moved to Deportivo La Coruna in 1998, where he helped them to win their first ever la Liga title in 2000. He retired in 2016. He was capped 13 times.
 
RB: Luis Rekarte (Spain)
Rekarte started with Alves, but made his name with Real Sciedad.  He had a brief spell with Barcelona before joining Deportivo La Coruna in 1991.  The team was known as "Super Depor".  He had 4 caps for Spain.

CB:  Noureddine Naybet (Morocco)
Naybet was one of the best African defender ever.  He played a record 115 matches for the Moroccan national team, representing the country in two World Cups and six Africa Cup of Nations tournaments. He spent most successful period of his career with Deportivo La Coruña in Spain. He won the 1999-2000 league title with them. He was one of the best center-back in La Liga. 
Noureddine Naybet
CB: Jorge Andrade  (Portugal)
Started with Estrela da Amadora and was bought by Porto FC in 2000.  After Japan/Korea 2002, he joined Deportivo La Coruna.  In 2007, he joined Juventus, but this spell was very unsuccessful due to injuries.  He was capped 51 times by Portugal and went to the WC 2002 and Euro 2004.
 
CB: Miroslav Dukic (Yugoslavia/Serbia)
He spent 14 years of his professional career in Spain, notably at the service of Deportivo de La Coruña and Valencia, amassing La Liga totals of 368 games and 11 goals, and winning six major titles for the two clubs combined. In 1994, Đukić missed a penalty kick in the game's last minute (eventual 0–0 draw).As a result FC Barcelona were crowned champions instead. He had 48 caps and  played at Euro 2000 for Yugoslavia.
 
CB: Fabricio Coloccini (Argentina)
Coloccini joined AC Milan in 1999 as a highly rated defender from Boca Juniors, but his career there was disappointing.  From 2004 to 2008, he played for Deportivo La Coruna and then, joined Newcastle United in 2008.  he made the PFA Team of the Year in 2011-12.

LB: Joan Capdevila (Spain)
Capdevila started his career with Espanyol in 1998.  He played for many clubs, notably with Villarreal and Deportivo La Coruna.  He had 60 caps for Spain. He was a key player of Spain's victory at the World Cup in 2010 and the European Championship in 2008.
Joan Capdevila
LB: Enrique Romero (Spain)
Romero played for many clubs.  His longest stint was with Deportivo La Coruna, he won the La Liga in 1999-2000. He earned 10 caps for Spain.  He went to the WC Finals in 2002.

CB/DM: Donato (Brazil/Spain)
Born in Rio de Janeiro, Donato began his career with America Football Club in his hometown, switching to neighbours CR Vasco da Gama in 1984. From 1988 to 2003, he played in Spain.  He started with Atletico Madrid.  He became a star with Deportivo La Coruna during the most successful period in the club's history.  They won La Liga in the 1999-2000 season. He earned 12 caps for Spain and went to Euro 1996 in England.

DM: Mauro Silva (Brazil)
He played for Brigantine in Brazil before joining Deportivo La Coruna in 1992.  He spent 13 seasons with the club, winning 6 major titles and one of them was the La Liga title in 2000. He played 59 times for Brazil.  He won the World Cup in 1994.
Mauro Silva
RM/CM: Victor Sanchez (Spain)
Played for Real Madrid and Racing Santander before making a name with Deportivo La Coruna. He won the league title in his first season with the club.  He played for them from 1999 to 2006.  He represented Spain for 8 times.

LM: Fran (Spain)
Fran made it to Deportivo La Coruna first team in 1988. He is considered one of the greatest players for the club.  He played 17 seasons with them, winning the 1999-2000 La Liga.  He was capped 16 times and represented Spain at Euro 2000.  

LW/FW: Albert Luque (Spain)
Luque started his career with Mallorca.  From 2002 to 2005, he played for Deportivo La Corunna.  He amassed La Liga totals of 248 games and 61 goals over the course of eleven seasons. He moved to Newcastle United in 2005, but never settled down. He played 17 times for Spain.  He made his international debut in a 3–2 group stage win against South Africa at 2002 World Cup Finals. 
Two years later, Luque played at UEFA Euro 2004.

RM/CM: Adolfo Aldana (Spain)
From 1988 to 1992, he played for Real Madrid, but used mainly as a sub.  In 1992, he joined Deportivo La Coruna. He formed a great midfield with Fran and Mauro Silva. Aldana closed out his career with two years at RCD Espanyol. He was capped 4 times.

AM: Juan Carlos Valeron
Valeron started his career with La Palmas.  He played Mallocra and Atletico Madrid before he moving to Depprtivo La Coruna, where he would play 13 seasons.  Widely considered to be one of the greatest midfielders of his generation, but injuries had limited his career.  He played 46 times for Spain.  He went to Euro 2000, the WC Finals in 2002 and Euro 2004.

Juan Carlos Valeron
AM/FW: Rivaldo (Brazil)
Rivaldo was a part of the attacking trio known as "Three R's" with Ronaldo and Ronaldinho at the 2002 World Cup Finals.  He scored 5 goals in 5 games as Brazil took its 5th World Cup. He also went to the WC Finals in 1998. He won the 1999 Ballon d' Or. He played for many clubs in his career.  He spent five years with Spanish club Barcelona,

AM: Djalminha (Brazil)
Djalminha played for many clubs in Brazil and Japan before he signed with Deportivo La Coruna in 1997.  He spent 7 seasons with the club.  He was one of the key players at the club's greatest period in history.  He only received 17 caps due to stiff completion for his position in Brazil during his time.
Djalminha
FW: Javier Manjarín (Spain)
In a 14-year professional career, he played mainly for Sporting de Gijón (four seasons) and Deportivo de La Coruña (six), also competing in Mexico in his later years. He had 13 caps and went Euro 1996.

ST: Diego Tristan (Spain)
He made his name with Mallorca.  He would have joined Real madrid in 2000, but his deal fell and he ended up with Deportivo La Corunna.  He had a strong start, but an injury in 2002 gradually affected his career.  He was capped 15 times.

ST: Roy Makaay (Holland)
Makaay played for Vitesse and  CD Tenerife before becoming a big star with Deportivo La Coruna.  He helped them to win their first ever La Liga title in 1999-2000.  In 2002-2003, he scored 29 goals and became the European Golden Boot winner.  In 2003, he moved to Bayern Muinch.  He won two Bundesliga title.  For the national team, he was only capped 43 times, largely because he was playing at the same time as Dennis Bergkamp, Patrick Kuivert and Ruud Van Nistelrooy.
Roy Makkay
ST: Rafael Franco (Argentina)
Franco played for River Plate, Newell's Old Boys, etc in Argentina before signing for Deportivo La Coruna in 1948.  Over there, he played for a line dubbed as  "Orquesta Canaria".

ST: Bebeto (Brazil) 
With 39 goals in 75 appearances for Brazil, Bebeto is the sixth highest goalscorer for his national team. He was the top scorer for Brazil at the 1989 Copa América as the nation went on to win the tournament. At the 1994 FIFA World Cup, he formed a formidable strike partnership with Romário to lead Brazil to a record fourth World Cup title.  His goal celebration against Holland was one of the best ever.  His best club career was with Deportivo La Coruna, where won the Pichichi Trophy in 1993.  He played for Flamengo, Vasco da Gama, Cruzeiro and Botafogo in Brazil, Sevilla in Spain, Toros Neza in Mexico, Kashima Antlers in Japan, and Al Ittihad in Saudi Arabia, finally retiring in 2002. 
Bebeto

Honorable Mention
Pedro Munitis, Jose Luis Vara, Flávio Conceição, Claudio Barragán, Turu Flores, Arsenio Iglesias, Riki, Walter Pandiani, Sergio, Francisco Liano, Voro, Diego Colotto, Alberto Lopo, Antonio Bello, Lionel Scaloni.

Squad Explanation
-- Luis Suarez Miramontes only played one season with the club.  The same applied to Rivaldo, but he was sensational that season. So I kept him.  His alternative would be Albert Luque.
-- Pahino's three season with Deportivo La Coruna was not as good his years with Real Madrid.
-- Fabricio Coloccini's reputation was destroyed with AC Milan.  He later recovered at Deportivo La Coruna. 
-- Amancio Amaro was known for his career at Real Madrid.
-- Miroslav Dukic and Naybet were the obvious choices for the centerbacks.  I considered Jorge Andrade and Fabricio Coloccini better than Voro,  Diego Colotto or Alberto Lopo.
-- Filipe Luis, Joan Capdevila and Enrique Romero fought two left back spots.  Filipe Luis was more of an upcoming player during his time.  Capdevila and Romero established themselves on the team.
--
Luis Rekarte over Lionel Scaloni because Rekarte was more of an disputed starter.
-- Djalminha had a much better career here than Rivaldo.  His reputation suffered by playing in the Golden Generation of Brazilian attack midfielders. Rivaldo earned his name while playing for Barcelona. 

Formation
4-2-2-2
I used a formation frequently used by Brazil throughout history.  Mauro Silva won a world cup playing liked this.  In real life, Deportvo La Coruna did not play with Valeron and Djalminha.  




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