Adria Dalmau. Will he get his chance against Girona? | Eduardo Candel Reviejo


Real Mallorca, who are bottom of the Spanish second division, play tenth-placed Girona at 20.00 on Sunday at the Son Moix. The Catalonia side are the league's highest scorers with ten but also have the worst goals-against tally: nine. I was in their Montilivi stadium in April to watch them beat us with a highly dubious penalty and thought they were nothing special despite their having being involved in last season's play-offs. Real Mallorca on the other hand have failed to find the net in 270 minutes of league football since hit-and-miss striker Oscar Diaz scored away at Cadiz a month ago.

There are lies, damned lies and football statistics. Indeed my stats guru (Steve “The Anorak” Baggaley) is always showing me various Mallorca game stats. Interesting as it is to read them, at the end of the day it means diddly squat. Because whatever stats come up, our strikers are irrefutably suffering from goal drought-itis of crisis proportions.

I know we've only played four games and people are saying the goals will come, but when will they and who's gonna score them? There's a distinct lack of confidence inside the penalty box and a lot of that is down to rank poor finishing. The team have been practising at the Son Bibiloni training ground this past week, shooting into those small ice-hockey size goals to see if we can improve our accuracy.

The inability to hit the net is costing us dearly - with two smash and grab defeats against Reus and Rayo, teams who showed us how to take what few chances our resolute defence allowed them. At the moment there's nothing wrong with the quality of our play but the quality of shots on target is the problem.

Against Girona I hope Brandon Thomas starts. When he comes on, usually late in the game, things begin to happen. I would also give youngster Adria Dalmau a home league baptism: he is likely to be our main line of attack as Oscar Diaz looks increasingly suspect. There looks to be a fitness doubt over our star man, the veteran midfielder Juan Culio. The 33-year-old Argentinian, who's played at the highest level in Argentina, Chile, Rumania, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates, limped off last week against Rayo and has been only doing light training all week, but was declared fit to play on Friday. Vazquez, with the exception of Lekic, will have a full squad available for a “must win” game.

There have been rumours flying around all week that the coach has to turn things around quickly or he could be our ninth coaching casualty in two years. For some reason he still hasn't got an assistant, and I find it quite unbelievable in this day and age that he can handle the job on his own. Or can he?

Good news came on Friday when it was announced season ticket sales had topped 10,000. It's good to see so many have taken the opportunity to purchase one of the cheapest season tickets in the division. Last weekend I faced more derision from a so-called fan who supports an English Premier league club on his new curved-screen LED TV from the comfort of his patio sun-lounger. I asked him if he'd ever thought about coming to the Son Moix and the look of “cuckoo land” was all the answer I got. People just can't understand how I can support a team that plays in the Spanish second division. I'm fed up explaining to people that just because I'm Scottish, I don't have to support another team from Caledonia, and that we haven't always been languishing in the second tier, reaching some heady heights back in the day.

The third-round home Copa del Rey game against UCAM Murcia at the Son Moix has been scheduled for 12.00 on Wednesday, 12 October, which is the Fiesta Nacional de España.

I'll close this column with some sad news. Former owner/president Utz Claassen's bodyguard/chauffeur, 63-year-old Harald Hüerten - nicknamed “Buffalo Bill” because of his long, flowing locks - was found dead in his garden in Canyamel after a heart attack earlier this week. He accompanied Herr Claassen every time he took his seat in the directors' box and was never far away from his side. He always had a quick quip with the assembled paparazzi. RIP.