Trying to match new faces and new squad numbers, looking for who has put on a few pounds, and feeling the buzz course through my body again. It must be pre season time and Las Zocas were the hosts for CD Tenerife’s opening 0-3 victory.
Pep Marti was beginning his first full campaign and only a few days in had been getting the players puffing with work outs in the hills, on Las Teresitas beach, and on the morning of this game, a full training ground session. Even so match fitness is another matter and some of our players were clearly not at full pace but there were lots of encouraging signs, most notably the first half display of Honduras 18 year old Darixon Vuelto. The under 17 international has arrived with an eye to playing for the B team but on this showing he could be hammering on the first team door. The sometime midfielder shared the main striking duties with Ale Gonzalez, another rising star, he took just over 20 minutes to grab his first goal from a short pass by German.
Las Zocas were restricted to a few chances, one long shot brought a good turn aside from goalie Angel Galvan. Omar Perdomo was another player who impressed, he forced the home keeper to make a smart save before latching onto a cross for a 36 minute goal. Marc Crosas looked strong in midfield and Camille looked solid at the back. There were wholesale changes at half time, Nano and Cristo Gonzalez took over up front but Las Zocas replacement keeper did well to block their best openings. Another sub, Oscar Gonzalez, brother of Ale, looked good as an attacking wide midfielder, both brothers made great strides with the B team last season after joining from Sporting San Jose and will fancy their chances of earning a senior shirt.
The floodlighting struggled to illuminate the second half, Carlos Ruiz put a strong header wide and Nano went close a few times before being bundled over in the box for a third goal from the spot. It was a good workout on the long road to the Segunda Division season, the Armada Sur were in good voice and the coach even had the players in a circle at the final whistle, stretching and warming down, they looked a little shell shocked by the extra exertions. There is still another new striker to sign and Choco Lozano to return from Honduras duty, the season tickets are cheaper than ever, and the after match beers slipped down nicely. Welcome back live football.