x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Dominguez backs his strike force

Juan Dominguez, the Deportivo La Coruna midfielder, has leapt to the defence of his side's strikers ahead today's visit of rock bottom Xerez.

Juan Dominguez, the Deportivo La Coruna midfielder, has leapt to the defence of his side's strikers ahead today's visit of rock bottom Xerez. Depor might be flying high in sixth spot in the Primera Division standings, but they remain there largely thanks to the indifferent form of the teams around them and have been roundly criticised in recent weeks. Their attack has borne the brunt of the criticism as they have scored only once in their last three games and, along with Osasuna, have the worst strike rate of the top half of the table.

"The strikers we have are perfectly good for this team," said Dominguez. "Where we are is thanks to them. We don't play with 10." Depor's attack will get the chance to prove themselves against Xerez, who have conceded 41 goals this season. Xerez have shown some signs of revival under a new coach, Nestor Gorosito, but have lost their last two matches and remain bottom of the league with only 11 points from 22 matches.

They have picked up only three points away from home this season but Gorosito is confident they can achieve their first victory on the road today. "We're playing against Deportivo with the maximum expectations that we're going to win," he said. Barcelona can extend their lead over second placed Real Madrid to five points, at least for 24 hours, if they win at home to Racing Santander.

Madrid want Inter Milan's Portuguese coach Jose Mourinho to replace embattled Manuel Pellegrini next season, according to the Spanish sports daily Marca. "Mourinho still has three years left with Inter but there is a clause in his contract which would allow him to leave in June," it said, adding Real's interest had been "well received" by the former Chelsea coach. * With agencies Barcelona v Racing Santander, 11pm, Aljazeera Sport +2