Claudio Barragán played in a classic RC Deportivo de La Coruña side who were one of the best Liga BBVA has ever seen. With him in their ranks, the Galician outfit lifted the Copa del Rey in the 1994/95 season, and after a career which included international recognition he made the move into management.
Right now the man from Manises (Valencia) is in charge of SD Ponferradina, one of the outstanding teams in the division at the start of this 2013/14 season in Liga Adelante. The side from the region of El Bierzo are third after the first eight games, and occupy one of the play-off places where teams fight it out to reach Liga BBVA. Looking to improve on last season, where they missed out on the play-offs on goal difference, Barragán and his men have had their foot on the gas since the beginning of the season.
After losing their first game away to Córdoba CF, Ponferradina went five games without defeat, securing three victories and two draws to move up to second place, their best ever position in Liga Adelante. A second loss followed against CD Mirandés, but against FC Barcelona B they secured their fourth win in eight games and now sit third, heading up a group of four teams on 14 points looking to catch RC Recreativo de Huelva and Real Sporting de Gijón.
The side’s next fixture will take place at the historic La Romareda stadium. Real Zaragoza will be waiting, but the visitors have more than enough in their armoury to take the points against side from Aragon. A thorn in the side of many a defence, something which their manager was noted for during his playing career, striker Fofo, who hails from the Balearic island of Mallorca, has scored six of his side’s 13 goals in Liga Adelante thus far.
Those who have also chipped in include Acorán and Yuri (both with two), whilst Jonathan Ruiz, Marcos García and Javi Lara have all scored once to see Ponferradina up to third place and allow those at El Toralín to start to believe they can reach Liga BBVA.
The side is experiencing its best ever moments, but Claudio Barragán and his pupils want to make the next step. After eight games Ponferradina sit in the play-off spots, with a side, and a manager, that have allowed their fans to truly think that promotion to Liga BBVA in within their grasp.