Eye Football

Real Sociedad’s drive to success in 2017


Real Sociedad’s drive to success in 2017


Despite Real Sociedad’s recent blip and defeat to Alaves 1- 0; this has been a season that has brought plenty of success for the Spanish side. What has driven the recent success of Eusebio Sacristan?

To be fair, this season’s success is not out of the ordinary and the successes of 4th place in the 2012-13 season and 7th in 2013-14 prove that Sociedad have been on the cusp of continued progress for years to come.

Sociedad are currently level on points with Villarreal in 5th place. This will certainly provide a benchmark; Villarreal have made Champions League semi-finals in previous years.

This weekend Real Sociedad take on bitter local rivals Athletic Bilbao at home. There is a feeling around town that this could be a pivotal moment in Sociedad’s season.

If Real Sociedad can finish in 5th place, this will bring plenty of joy for the fans at the Anoeta. CrownBet’s  La Liga betting odds this season currently suggest that this is still a possibility. However, what the club wants is the fourth-place spot that will guarantee Champions League football next year. With their current form still on point; this could certainly be a possible achievement.

Eusebio Sacristan, the club’s manager, has stayed put at the club while bringing together a squad full of young reputable players.

Sacristan’s forward Carlos Vela has been a success since his move from the Premier League. Vela, now 28, has played over 150 games for Sociedad since his permanent transfer in 2012 and has returned an excellent 50 plus goals since his arrival.

Sociedad also have the likes of Asier Illarramendi and Sergio Canales; all with experience playing for Real Madrid.

The youth of Juanmi adds some panache to their squad; whilst the experienced Xabi Prieto, Mikel Gonzalez, Carlos Martinez and Imanol Agirretxe are considered amongst the most important players in the squad.

Many believe that Sociedad’s focus on having a Spanish contingent has helped build a team spirit not found in many La Liga squads. Sociedad have no non-English speaking player in their squad, with only Vela from Mexico and goalkeeper Geronimo Rulli from Argentina the non-Spanish players in their squad. Both hail from Spanish speaking countries; meanwhile Brazilian forward Willian Jose has spent the last 4 years playing in Spain.

Coach Sacristan has been blessed with coming to the club whilst some of his best players are reaching their peak age of around 28-32. Illarramendi and Canales may not have made it at Real Madrid, but at Sociedad their quality is invaluable.

Sociedad are currently level on points with Villarreal in 5th place. This will certainly provide a benchmark; Villarreal have made Champions League semi-finals in previous years.