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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 23 October 2018

Baniyas liked Luis Garcia’s ‘stability’ at previous stops

Luis Garcia, the new Baniyas coach, will watch his players from the stands when they play in the club’s four-team friendly Ramadan Cup before taking charge of them.
Baniyas introduced Luis Garcia as their coach. ‘This is a new experience for me and I am already beginning to enjoy it,’ he says. Delores Johnson / The National
Baniyas introduced Luis Garcia as their coach. ‘This is a new experience for me and I am already beginning to enjoy it,’ he says. Delores Johnson / The National

ABU DHABI // Luis Garcia, the new Baniyas coach, will watch his players from the stands when they play in the club’s four-team friendly Ramadan Cup before taking charge of them.

Baniyas play Al Hadd of Bahrain in the opener in the four-day competition that also includes Al Zafar of Oman and the UAE Olympic team from July 16 to 20.

“This competition provides me with the opportunity to have a look at the players,” Garcia said when he was officially introduced Monday night at the Crown Plaza Hotel on Yas ­Island.

“I have been tasked with the objectives of building the team and of course winning a trophy. I have not come with a magic stick but will try to achieve the objectives of the club and the fans.

“However, my first priority would be to know the players and their culture before I start work with them.

“This is a new experience for me and I am already beginning to enjoy it.”

According to Saleh Al Hammadi, a member of the club’s board of directors, they were in talks with many managers before deciding on the Spaniard because of his good history.

“What we liked most about him was his stability at every club he coached,” Al Hammadi said.

“For example he was at Getafe for three seasons and three years at Levante, his last two clubs. We found him different to others we were in negotiations with because all others have had only a season or two with one club.”

Garcia revealed he had a serious offer inside Spain a day before he had formally agreed a deal with Baniyas and did not want to go back on his word.

“This is a new experience for me and I am looking forward to the new challenge,” Garcia said when asked how much he knew about the region’s football and the culture.

Garcia was the coach who provided Abdelaziz Barrada, the Moroccan international who play for Al Jazira, his first break to play in the first team at the Spanish club Getafe.

“It was not only Barrada but a few others too. But that would be the job of any coach, if talent is spotted they need to be given the break whenever the opportunity comes,” he said.

“At Baniyas, I would be interested in watching the reserve team and the age group players in the club.

“If they are spotted they need to be provided the opportunity to play at the top flight.”

Mohammed Aida Al Minahli, the Baniyas team manager, said the club’s vision was to produce more players to the national team.

“We have several players in the current national team but we want to nurture more and build Baniyas as a team,” said Aida Al Minahli.

apassela@thenational.ae

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