Archive for September, 2019
Travel Broadens The Ambitions Of CD Tenerife

Reinventing themselves means smashing a few old barriers, poor away form was always a problem for CD Tenerife but 4 points from an early Sunday start in Albacete, and a Thursday evening at Elche was a massive boost.
Finding their groove, CD Tenerife were easy like a Sunday morning as they romped to a 0-4 win at Albacete. Easy on the eye wth cool, assured team play, there were towering performances all over the pitch. Coach Aritz Lopez Garai was purring as his plans came together thanks to the inclusion of two more summer signings.
Ramon Mierez started as the central striker and led the line confidently, and Alex Munoz made his bow in the centre of defence and was a calming influence on those around him. The reshuffle saw Malbasic out on the right, his opening minute run and cross caused havoc in the home defence for Alex Bermejo to finish the move clinically for a goal to add to his previous weeks eye catching performance. Munoz is also experienced in the left back berth and covered well to release Robert Mazan for some lightning raids. There was only 13 minutes on the clock when a Borja Lasso corner from the right flew over to a deep left position where Mazon cracked a quality goal into the bottom corner of the net. Albacete had their moments, a high right cross looked threatening before goalie Adrian Ortola plucked the ball out of the air one handed. This was dreamland, even when Malbasic had a hesitant shot blocked as unmarked Borja Lasso was screaming for the pass, it was a mere wrinkle in the master plan.

Into the second half, Ortola robbed a danger ball off a home forwards head, and Mierez hit a post as the work rate never relented. Borja was typical of the effort the Tenerife players were pouring in, he unlocked the hosts defence and Mierez sneaked in for a cheeky close header that even VAR couldn´t deny to make it 0-3 after 72 minutes. Tenerife had the luxury of being able to give substitute run outs to two more of the summer brigade. Dani Gomez beat his marker and drilled his shot between defenders to round up the scoring just prior to the end of normal time. Nahuel Leiva, a left winger who squeezed in just before the transfer window closed, also got a brief taste of the action to bring competition for all places a step nearer. This was one of the most impressive Tenerife displays for many years.

Moving on to Elche, hopes were high but the home side, inspired by ex Tenerife goal legend Nino, gave them a tough start. Luis Milla returned from suspension to allow veteran midfielder Aitor Sanz a rest. Nino forced a corner after 8 minutes and Quasma got a boot in behind Carlos Ruiz to grab a home lead. Tenerife lost their shape briefly but rallied with Malbasic strong down the right and Alberto dominant in midfield. A delightful cross field ball from left back Mazan to righ back Luis Perez deserved a decent finish but the best chance came near the end of the first half. A Luis Milla free kick dropped into a crowded goal mouth and Alex Munoz got a head to it but the ball skidded out off the post.

Dani Gomez replaced Mierez for the second half and revitalised the away chase. After 63 minutes another Malbasic cross was met by a powerful Borja header to level the score. Tenerife bossed the remainder of the game, Alex Bermejo had a couple of golden moments, only the goalies faint touch stopped the best one. Elche appealed for a hand ball and penalty with 15 minutes to go but the hairs on the hand of Carlos Ruiz got no more than a passing breeze, and the VAR call confirmed that. Ortola´s confident interception of a cross in the 5 minutes of injury time sealed a deserved point and continued a surge in the right direction.

Bar Cafe Auditorio At The Heart Of Los Cristianos

Like the return of an old friend, Bar Cafe Auditorio has re-opened with great value, friendly service, and plenty of choices. You couldn´t be more central in Los Cristianos than the main crossroads on Avenida de Juan Carlos, just below the bus station. As I tucked into my delicious chicken, rice, and chips, the evening sun half covered the large terrace, it was like having a front row seat to watch the world go by.

Chicken was one of the daily choices on the menu, other delights like lamb or pork with Canarian potatoes were sure to tempt me back, especially at a mere 8 euros for a first and second course with bread, a drink, and dessert. There was a range of salads too, including a big special with fruit, nuts, and toasted bread, just 7 euros.

I know I´m not alone in missing the relaxed setting, Guaza Mountain looks down on one side, Roque del Conde stands taller straight ahead, and the park behind wraps its green embrace around the 800 seat Auditorio Infanta Leonor theatre, and the attached cultural centre. Here´s a little history lesson. The theatre was added to the main building in 2011 and is named after King Felipe’s & Queen Letizia´s first born, Princess Leonor of Spain. There´s a small lounge area inside that can be served from the bar, many people have missed that option on show nights. Arona council runs free buses to many local fiestas, and a weekend free service to the Farmers Market in Valle San Lorenzo, the pick up point is handy just outside the cafe.

Back to the main stage for eating, Sunday paella will be a great way to try some local culture, on the evening I called by there was a mix of Spanish and British customers, with menus in both languages. Snacks are well covered, sandwiches, croissants, burgers, and chips, and tapas such as prawns or mushrooms. With the bus station or concert intervals tapping at your watch, a quick coffee or Amstel draught beer might be just the ticket, but a more leisurely sip in the sun can always be enjoyed with one of the days newspapers from the bar. Open daily from 8 am to 11 pm, it´s always a good time to call by.

Canarian Derby Draw Is Nothing To Brag About

One man short and a late penalty called against them, it´s no wonder CD Tenerife were relieved to get a 0-0 home draw with inter island arch rivals UD Las Palmas. Summers ten man tidal wave of signings has so far translated to just a trickle of new faces on the pitch and the lack of goals is already a concern. Progress is slow for Tenerife but two of the new players, goalie Adrian Ortola, and midfielder Alex Bermejo led the rallying call for those still in the shadows.

Slovakian left back Robert Mazan had been underlining his name in the starting line up but international duty meant Isma Lopez got a recall. Chief culprit in the previous weeks 4-0 pasting at Ponferradina, Nicola Sipcic was dropped with old reliable Carlos Ruiz taking his centre back role. Curbelo gave the yellow visitors the first chance but missed by some distance after a mazy run. Tenerife swept a shot wide at the other end and a brilliant tackle by Luis Perez stopped Bela from setting up another Las Palmas effort, and set the tone for a nervy battle of two sides down at the wrong end of the table.

The Gran Canarian team have had money problems and trying to enforce wage cuts on players hasn´t made for a happy ship. Earlier in the week, 16 year old Tenerife born Pedri signed for Barcelona in a transfer worth a possible five million euros, and was promptly loaned back to Las Palmas. It´s a heavy burden to carry and the midfielder struggled to show glimpses of his potential. Malbasic held his place up front for Tenerife, he blows hot and cold but was a Saturday night iceberg when he was needed. The old clumsy touch and slow responses were back. Bermejo was starting to make openings from midfield but they needed a responsive striker.

Ortola was the hero when Las Palmas made a quick break after 20 minutes, he tipped a fierce shot up and off the underside of the crossbar to deny a sure goal. Aitor Sanz was no slouch when Lopez made a poor clearance, the midfield veteran kept a cool head and cleared the danger. After Tenerife failed to inflict damage from a Perez earned corner, Aitor was in action again at the other end with a smart header to keep Las Palmas out just before the break. The second half opened with goalie Martinez flattening Malbasic but getting awarded a free kick just outside his area, it looked closer to inside the line and a possible penalty but VAR didn´t want to get invloved. Bermejo darted through a gap down the left and fired at shot that found the keepers waiting arms. Martinez was pushing his luck with the ref, he fell and rolled blaming Malbasic but it was flattering the Serbian striker to suggest he was that dangerous.

Losing Luis Milla was a blow for the home side after 67 minutes, the midfielder went for  a  losse tackle on Pedri, it was the first red card for the 26 year old in his senior career, he will sit out one match. Ramon Mierez took over from Malbasic to add to his brief debut the previous week. The Argentinian forward won a high duel and flicked the ball off to Bermejo, he controlled it before shooting just wide, but it was a promising link up between the pair. Ortola had to make a couple of smart saves as the action switched ends, and Luis Perez, again outstanding, tested Martinez with a high cross. The 18,000 crowd felt the tension rise as Las Palmas had a penalty shout for a foul on their goalie, the waits seem to get longer but VAR squashed the claim. Five minutes of added time turned the screw but a draw was probably the fair result on the night. Two away games in five days will be a fierce test for Tenerife, they will need to blood the three untried new players, including former Spurs and England youth player Samuel Shashoua, once he is fit.

Table Topping CD Marino Set The Pace

Winning breeds confidence, and confidence breeds success. CD Marino are living proof of that old saying, but they also showed hard work and plenty of skill in a 2-0 home win over CD Santa Ursula that gave them maximum points from the opening three games. It was a tough, bruising encounter as the south hosted the north of Tenerife in Playa de Las Americas, and the blues were lethal to take a two minute lead.

Roy launched a long, deep ball, Juanmi got a touch, and Nami planted his shot wide of keeper Juanje. There was no sitting back on the advantage, Marino surged again with Prince threading a pass through to Nami that was cleared by the visiting defence. Santa Ursula gave goalie David Ruso his first work to do from a weak shot by Chus. After 20 minutes the reds were reduced to 10 players, Guille could have no complaints after his wild lunge took down Prince. It meant more work for their captain Juanue in goal, he had to smother a close attempt from Nami that was inching towards his goal line.

A Juanmi header was cleared but soon followed by Alberto cutting in from the right before blasting a shot over the bar. Nicky was getting in some of his speedy overlaps on the right and chances kept coming. A much needed water break did little to quell the Marino fire, there was a squad wide willingness to take chances in search for another gaol, Saavedra tried his luck and wasn´t that far off target. Santa Ursula had another knock back when Azael landed badly after a tackle and had to be carried off by his team mates, and needed treatment for a knee injury. They could have ended the half further depleted, as tempers frayed, Miguel had a couple of pushes on Roy in full view of the ref but was still able to join his team mates for the half time break.

The second half opened with Marino in an upbeat mood. Prince sped round the back of the reds defence and launched a teasing cross for Nami but Juanje plucked the ball out of the air. Santa Ursula were determined to chase the game, former CD Tenerife midfielder Vitolo was not as sprightly as in his prime but read the game well and dropped in some neat passes. Diego took over from Prince and added new options to the home attacks. Injury replacement Erik, was prompting some raids down the left for Santa Ursula, he sped down the wing and delivered a good cross but there were no red shirts waiting. Miguel got lucky again, this time pushing Diego in the goal mouth with no sanction.

A Nami corner during sustained pressure by Marino, found Diego in front of goal ready to bury the ball in the corner of the net for a 2-0 lead after 76 minutes. Frustration was getting the better of Santa Ursula, Lentini ploughed into Saavedra, again the ref was lenient. There was still some purpose left in the visitors, sub Gabri hit a perfect cross field ball to Joel which brought a top class save from David Ruso. Vitolo crafted another delicate free kick that forced a corner, Erik pressed up and his shot scraped the bar. Marino were good value for their win, there´s a strong belief among the players that showed in their passing and awareness of each other. It will get harder from now on as other teams try to derail them, but the blues have a good look about them.

Ex Pats Briefed For Brexit, Deal Or No Deal

Alarmist headlines, resignations, and rumours had further stirred the Brexit pot since the last Tenerife presentation from the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, 11 months ago. On Thursday 12th September 2019, around 130 people packed into the Los Cristianos Cultural Centre to her the latest news and advice from Tim Hemmings, Deputy Head of Mission to Spain.

An opening 15 minute update, included a reinstatement of the “unwavering” intent of Spain and the UK to uphold the citizens rights of both countries, and further assurances in the most recent Spanish Royal Decree. Tim Hemmings underlined the fact that both countries had made plans in the cases of a Deal or No Deal departure, and these would preserve the rights of those legally registered in Spain on the Padron as residents. A show of hands revealed that pretty much the whole audience was legally registered, some fairly recently.
No Deal would still leave a 21 month grace period for people to register and become fully legal, for documents such as driving licences to be changed to non EU status. We were also told that the newer certificate form of residencia would most likely revert to the popular card format with a holders photo. Health cover was another key issue with the aim still being that British and Spanish would continue to be treated if living in the other country, but confirmation is still awaited.
Passports would not undergo any instant changes, but it was stressed that checking the expiry date is a good idea to see yours has between 9 years and 6 months coverage. Deputy Hemmings also insisted there would be no need to cover, alter, or remove the EU heading on a current passport. The format of further replacement passports is still to be confirmed.

UK driving licnces would still need to be changed to Spanish licences but could be changed back in the holder then returned to the UK. The recent announcement that UK state pensions for those resident in Spain would be increased up to 2023, was just a short term admin guide, further increases beyond that date would still be approved for a few years at a time. That dealt with the main big areas of concern so at that point questions were invited from the floor, with British Vice Consulate Helen Diaz de Arcaya Keating, Charmaine Arbouin (British Consul for Andalucia and the Canary Islands) , and the Consul´s Brexit Officer Deepika Harjani adding their points of experience and advice to the answers. It’s worth stressing at this point that many answers and links to online forms needed are on the social media sites that the British Consulate host. I’ve included as many direct links as possible but you can find many others, and more detailed information at the websites.
A recent caller at the Playa de Las Americas police station to sort out residencia was told there are no appointments available for now. The team pointed out that there should be under the 21 months grace period, but there is an online appointment booking service. If this still doesn’t work it’s worth contacting the British Consulate to ensure these channels are working in all municipalities.
Swallows (mainly pension age winter visitors) time limits to stay in Spain were queried. The answer was they can stay for 90 days in each 180 day period and it will remain that way under a No Deal withdrawal.
Also the continuation of the S9 health form for free treatment in Spain was queried. No change on this.
Onward free movement within the EU once a Spanish resident is back in the UK. Another area that has yet to be agreed for when we become “third country nationals” after Brexit.
There seemed to be less queries than at previous consulate road shows, it was pointed out the the Swallows don’t tend to start arriving for another month or so. But hopefully the hour length of the meeting was a sign that the many avenues of information publicised by the British Consulate team are working well. They answered several one on one queries after the main meeting broke up, a big thanks to Tim Hemmings and the British Consulate team.

Here are some useful links for more information. The British Consulate site for Tenerife. includes special Brexit area. You can also stay in touch with updates from the British Consolate at Facebook  Check Passport ,Healthcare .

 

Head Start For Virgen Del Carmen Fiesta In Los Cristianos

Music, fun, and dancing were the bait as the fishing community of Los Cristianos set sail for a weekend of celebration and tribute in honour of their patron, the Virgen del Carmen. Tenerife doesn’t need an excuse to party and I could hear the DJ pumping out the music as I approached the compact Plaza de la Alpispa, behind the old beach.

The Saturday afternoon Fiesta del Sombrero (hat party) has become a popular part of the weekends tide of joy, and is always inventive and creative. Tables were set out in informal rows laden with food and drink but not many people were sitting still. The sea and nature in general always inspires the head gear but they´re not immune to modern influences, a home made drone perched on one hat but it was light weight compared to a full sized plant pot sported by one smiling lady.

Beer had clearly gone to some heads, but only in the artistic way, and as Dorada is now the official shirt sponsor of CD Tenerife, it made me proud to see the foaming tributes. Subtlety was just as effective, a neat hat with a floral trimming was enough to catch the eye and maybe even win a prize. The DJ´s table was well laden with trophies for the best efforts, they all looked deserving to me.

Further round by the port, other preparations were taking place for the following days parade of the Virgen´s statue among a flotilla of fishing boats, after the main lady had been carried through the streets of the town. Just along from the hat party, the younger revellers were enjoying the inflatable water slides as various cartoon characters watched from the side lines.

Fireworks will be lighting up the sky as the celebrations come to a close. For the fishing folk the hard work of pitting their wits against the waves continues all year. If you find yourself feeling a little hungry, it´s a much easier task to seek out one of the many local restaurants that serve the best of the catch from the Atlantic waters that lap at the shores of the Canary Islands.