Manolo Jimenez revealed in more than one interview yesterday that he had asked Real Zaragoza for Diego Forlan this winter.
The Aragonese have not won a game yet in 2013 and Jimenez has looked to explain that the club’s financial situation, which includes a debt of around €60m, influenced plans made during the January transfer market.
“I asked [President] Agapito [Iglesias] to sign Forlan. He was a good fit, a veteran player who was still a good reinforcement because he could have guaranteed us 10 goals, by the end of the season,” the Coach told Aragon Radio and then Cadena Ser yesterday.
“It was enough to save us, but he demanded €2m net salary which we could not afford.”
Jimenez also said that Mario Bolatti – a teammate of Forlan’s at Internacional – was also targeted for a loan move, but again was too expensive. Bolatti has since been loaned to Racing Club.
The Coach at least spoke more fondly of the summer transfer activity and the interest their signings have since pulled in.
“Of the 14 signings we made in the summer, there were great teams interested in three of them, they also offered them a lot of money, and they had arrived here at zero cost.”
Zaragoza have picked up just two points in the League since December.
“I disagree with those who say that we are now very bad and that we were pretty good before. We are among the teams that has to fight to avoid relegation.
“What we all want is for Zaragoza to be as they were before, but we have to live in the reality of today.”
The team have lost seven of their 11 League games at home this term.
“We are a team under construction, inexperienced, we are paying for that inexperience at home where it is costing us points that are very significant.
“There is much anxiety at home. The players have a tremendous desire to do well, so we make mistakes. So many want to score a goal that we go wrong and are unable to correct it.
“Away from home we have picked up more points because the players have more freedom and tranquillity.
“Everyone who said a few months ago we were a team for Europe was putting added pressure on some players who were not ready for it.”