Abelardo Fernandez thanked Real Betis for their “tremendous professionalism” in beating Getafe to ensure Sporting Gijon stayed in La Liga at the first attempt.
Goals from Jony Rodriguez and Sergio Alvarez earned Sporting a 2-0 win against Villarreal on Sunday to keep them in the top flight at the expense of Rayo Vallecano and Getafe, the latter of whom lost 2-1 to Betis.
“We must thank Betis, who proved to be tremendous professionals when not playing for anything,” the Coach said after the game.
“After the birth of my children, the end of last season and the latter of this one are the best moments of his life.
“The communion between the fans and players was key. I feel this club as the fans do, and I want to grow with them.
“[Possible departure] Jony [Rodriguez] has been our most decisive attacker of the last two seasons.
“[Sergio] won me over with his work, despite recently having been dropped from the team.
“Our objective for the season was 17th place, but I hope to save the team without so much trouble [next season].
“Next season, there’ll be no restrictions for signings, but after two seasons with [restrictions], I don’t know if I’ll make any [signings]!
“It was never our intention, to throw in the towel, although there were very delicate moments like after the defeat in Granada [when he accused officials of ‘robbing’ his team.
“Right now, I’m exhausted after two very tough seasons.”
Sporting’s opponents Villarreal had been accused of not turning up at El Molinon as Rayo’s President insisted “it wasn’t a game of football”, while Getafe boss Juan Esnaider quipped “Marcelino will be happy” in relation to the Coach’s affinity with the Asturians.
However, Marcelino argued: “I’ve tried to respect the competition as much as possible.
“I’d like to have played in Gijon in other circumstances, but what I saw was a passionate fanbase and a full house.”