Juan Carlos Garrido says La Liga is Real Betis’ priority and ‘long-term objective’ but that the Europa League, as a ‘short-term objective’, has its uses.
Los Beticos have so far been balancing a group stage campaign in the European competition that has seen them assure passage to the Round of 32 with a miserable League campaign that has them propping up the table.
For their new Coach, it is clear where the priority lies, as he heads into Group I’s closing fixture at home to Rijeka, where bettering Lyon’s result at Vitoria de Guimaraes would see them advance as group winners.
“Fundamental to us is the League. Unfortunately, for the situation in which we find ourselves, the priority is to avoid relegation,” Garrido has made clear to reporters today.
“This, for the club, its players and the fans, is the first major objective. There is only the one long-term goal.
“The Europa League is more of a short-term goal, in which we will try to progress through every round and do well in every game. It is a competition that will help us to continue to improve our level.”
Garrido is 10 days into his stint as Betis Coach, having replaced Pepe Mel a week last Monday.
“We have had two weeks during which the main objective has been to revitalise the team. We want to regain the fans’ enthusiasm so as to achieve things.
“This has been achieved so far in our games. The games have carried a basic objective for us to be won and to present a good image of ourselves, and to make it clear that in every game we will fight until the death.
“I see a team wanting to work and wanting to transfer these ideas on to the field. We want an organised team again, which can please the fans.”