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Saturday March 5 2016
Escriba on the brink

Getafe’s dreadful run of form leaves them in a relegation fight and Fran Escriba clinging onto his job. Edin Halilovic looks at what’s gone wrong for the club and their Coach.

Just six weeks ago in mid-January, Getafe were on a three-game winning streak and sitting fairly comfortably in mid-table. Now, the Madrid-based club are on a disastrous run of form, having lost seven in a row which leaves Coach Fran Escriba’s future severely in doubt.

The 50-year old, who did so well in his time at Elche to bring them up to La Liga and keep them there for two seasons before a cruel administrative relegation, had started life well at Coliseum Alfonso Perez. His side amassed 26 points from their first 20 games of the season and looked set to stay afloat, but this awful run has changed the picture entirely for them.

Getafe, who haven’t scored in over nine hours of football, now find themselves level on points with Rayo Vallecano and Granada, who are both joint-third from bottom, and in the middle of a tough situation. With games against Sevilla, Barcelona, Villarreal, and Real Madrid on the horizon, their woes are likely to continue.

Escriba’s side have now failed to net in six consecutive games following the crushing defeat to Las Palmas, which is as many as they didn’t score in during the first 20 games of the campaign. Their defence, which kept seven clean sheets in the first half of the campaign and was the best of any bottom-half team, has also crumbled of late, as evidenced by their horrific showing at Gran Canaria on Tuesday.

Loss of form at both ends of the pitch have proven catastrophic and even bizarre from a team who looked quite adept in those areas up until recently. It’s hard to put a finger on what exactly has gone so bad for them, as it always is whenever a club of their stature goes through one of these rotten spells at some point, but the fact is things must improve – and fast.

It’s not as if injuries and suspensions have derailed them so badly – they’ve barely had any issues in that regard. It’s also unlikely that Escriba and the coaching staff have changed the way they work given their early-season success. Merely, it appears to be a case of losing confidence and everyone not reacting well enough to stopping the rot.

Getafe have been here before and managed to survive on every occasion, but such a rotten run is never easy to stop while it’s going and Escriba may be counting his final days at the club if results don’t improve soon. His fate may well be sealed this weekend if his team fail to pick up any points against a Sevilla side who have yet to win on the road in the League this term. It’s now or never for the Valencian.

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