Demichelis questions player sales at Malaga

07 March 2013 01:46

Malaga's Martin Demichelis on Thursday criticised the club for selling too many players and called on the Spanish team's Qatari owners to be clearer about their intentions, as they face up to a European ban.

"Instead of thinking about improving or maintaining the squad, as soon as any chance to sell has arisen they (the club owners) have sold players," the Argentine defender told reporters.

"I believe the next player to be sold in the short-term will be (Spanish international) Isco because he is the one in the squad who will be most wanted.

"I hope that this group is maintained and reinforced, that the ideas of the owners are not that Malaga will just fade away and that we can continue to grow."

The Andalusian club were bought by Qatari Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser Al-Thani in 2010 and initially embarked upon a spending spree that culminated in their highest ever league finish of fourth last season.

That brought them qualification to the Champions League for the first time. The club, currently fourth in La Liga, has progressed to the last 16 and are 1-0 down going into the second leg of their last 16 tie against Porto next week.

But a restless close season last year saw a number of key players leave and the club even reported to unions for unpaid wages.

Their failure to pay transfer fees to other clubs and tax liabilities on time led to a ban from UEFA competitions from next season should they qualify, although the club are appealing that decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Demichelis said he could not comment on the financial running of the club but nevertheless said the departure of players such as Nacho Monreal to Arsenal in the January transfer window was a worrying sign.

"Right now we, the players, are the principal ones responsible as to whether we continue in the European places. But, at the end of the season, those responsible to show what they want to do with this club are the owners."

Demichelis himself and Javier Saviola could be set to leave the club at the end of the season when they are out of contract.

But the player denied that he had come to an agreement to return to River Plate despite meeting the vice-president of the Argentine giants, Diego Turnes, insisting that he would make a decision on his future at the club at the end of the season.

Source: AFP