Embattled Celades battles to repair damage caused by Valencia's week of woe

Albert Celades has seen Valencia suffer painful Champions League and La Liga defeats, but the rookie head coach insists all is not lost.

Albert Celades

The past week has come as a jolt to Valencia boss Albert Celades, with a 4-1 thumping by Atalanta in Italy on Wednesday followed by a 3-0 whipping at Real Sociedad on Saturday.   -  Getty Images

Albert Celades was once used to the high life with Barcelona and Real Madrid - now he is dealing with the misery caused by an abject week for his Valencia team.

Four days of carnage has left Valencia's Champions League hopes in tatters and its prospects of returning to that competition next season dealt a major blow.

As a player, Celades was a defensive midfielder who began his career at Camp Nou and later traded loyalties by pulling on the white shirt of Madrid, often playing as a foil to David Beckham.

RELATED| Injured Roberto out of Barcelona's Napoli and Madrid assignments

His coaching career has included spells as an assistant with Spain and Madrid, before a first head coaching opportunity presented itself at Valencia last September.

The past week has come as a jolt to the 44-year-old, with a 4-1 thumping by Atalanta in Italy on Wednesday followed by a 3-0 whipping at Real Sociedad on Saturday.

"We are going through the worst moment of the season, but I don't think that the season is lost," Celades said.

His immediate task is to ensure the team's morale does not fall away, with its winless run having stretched to five games.

Although the side has slipped to eighth place in La Liga, Valencia remains within touching distance of the top four.

"We are not having the same performance away from home as at Mestalla," Celades said.

"However, there are still a lot of games left in LaLiga and the return leg of the Champions League tie. Our idea is to continue picking up points, although the numbers are there and we have conceded too many goals that have impeded us from being at the top of the standings. We have to fix this as soon as possible."

RELATED| Hazard to miss Madrid's Man City and Barca clashes after suffering fresh ankle blow

Celades feels Valencia was better against Atalanta than the scoreline suggested, even though the Serie A side led by four goals inside an hour and it took a response from Denis Cheryshev to give Los Che any hope for the March 10 second leg at Mestalla.

Speaking after the Sociedad match, Celades was quoted by Valencia's website as saying: "We came into this one off a tough defeat in the Champions League, which was too heavy for what we saw on the pitch.

"However, not long ago we had a great game against Atletico Madrid in which we deserved to win.

"We are struggling to win but, of course, I see myself as being strong enough to turn the situation around."

Support Sportstar


Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.

  Dugout videos