Anything is possible, there´s nine months of football ahead, and of course it´s going to be our year. That´s the idyllic pre season state of all football fans, and CD Tenerife have licked their wounds after just missing out on promotion, said farewell to a few players, and welcomed new arrivals like saviors.
I missed a couple of friendlies due to my Oxford break and was stir crazy by the time the Copa Mahou home leg v Las Palmas arrived. Aerosmith had rocked the Heliodoro to its roots and the grass was still suffering so CD Marino´s Estadio Antonio Dominguez hosted the game. An uplifting 2-2 draw was full of encouraging signs, new right back Luiz Perez looked very comfortable on the ball, and new striker Juan Villar was one of a raft of half time changes, he scored both our goals, the second from the spot. Lack of team listings at these games and new shirt numbers make it challenging to see who´s who, I was guzzling beer on the terracing with the Armada Sur and strained my eyes beyond the running track.
The Saturday night game at UD Ibarra saw me back prowling the touchline, despite a liberal sprinkling of B team players and of course no listing, it was a bit easier to deduce who the suspects were. Carlos Abad started in goal, a stocky left winger turned out to be Tanzania youngster Faridi (no 37) , he worked hard and later swapped wings to show equal speed. Bryan Acosta and Juan Carlos were other notable new signings to get a run out. Acosta was always probing from midfield and Juan Villar always looking to latch onto a half chance of scoring. It was an old favourite, Alberto who opened the scoring with a strong header from a Juan Carlos cross after 32 minutes.
The revolving door brought plenty of half time swaps, Dani took over in goal, Argentinian centre back Lucas Aveldaño got his first action, Victor Csadesus grabbed some time, and B team hopefuls Bolaños and Brian Martin joined the fray. Bryan Acosta was denied a goal by a late offside call but what a life the other Brian was having. An early wide chance hinted at more to come. A break from Carballo ended with a goal for Ibarra after 78 minutes, Dani seemed a little hesitant as the ball went over him and if I´m being an old meanie I could add that Suso was having a mare of a game since his half time emergence.
Ibarra goalie Adrian had already made some impressive stops but saved his best to deny Brian Martin, the youngster looked very sharp and kept getting into good shooting positions. On another day he would have got a hat trick at least but the keeper was inspired. The 1-1 draw was probably fair, the game was more about bedding in new players, letting the young guns get a taste of senior football, and testing the shape and quality of the team play. There were certainly more ticks than crosses for coach Pep Marti. There should be four more new signings before the big kick off and competition for places is already looking keen.