His youthfulness and nose for goal are helping him shine at SD Ponferradina this season in Liga Adelante. At the end of the first half of the season, Adolfo Enríquez García 'Fofo' (Palma de Mallorca, 02/03/1990), showed himself to be one of Claudio Barragán's key men, top scoring with eight goals and helping the El Bierzo side to get up to twelfth position with 28 points. LFP.es talked to the Balearic Islander about the first half of the season and Ponferradina's aspirations for the end of the season.
LFP.es: What do you think makes Liga Adelante so even this year – there’s merely 15 points between the top and bottom clubs? Fofo: The competitiveness that exists between all the sides in the division. Between the relegation and playoff places there’s only seven points. Everyone plays as if it were the last game, for their lives. There are very few leagues in Europe than can match what’s happening in Liga Adelante this season.
Your side had an incredible start to the season, but as the games have gone by the team's level has dropped. Did the good start take it's toll? Fofo: The start of the season was spectacular but it's difficult to keep that up because of the equal nature of the league. The side got through the rough patch and once again we're starting to play like we did at the start of the season, playing good football. I think the results, despite the last two draws, will come.
Last year Yuri was a key member of the side, and this year Fofo has taken on the baton as the side’s top scorer. It looks like Ponferradina always have a standout player. Fofo: We all know that our team's star man is Yuri; he has scored so many goals for this club. I'm scoring a few now and hopefully I'll carry on helping the side. Luckily I've been the one in form, but Yuri's goals will come back soon.
What is it about El Toralín that makes it difficult to take points away from there? Fofo: This season, just like last, we're taking a lot of points. The relationship between the fans and the players is fundamental. They're our 12th man. Sides who come to the Toralín know it's a difficult place to come, and this has fortunately stayed the test of time. Despite being a small ground, the crowd give us a lot of backing and it spurs us on, and therefore our good seasons are in no small part down to them.
"People joke about it in the changing rooms, but honestly, to gain promotion to Liga BBVA would be a dream come true for a humble team like us."
What's your assessment of the first 21 games? Fofo: Quite positive given that we've got 28 points, and given the equality in Liga Adelante this is no small feat. With the side now established in the division we hope to get more points than ever. The only thing you'd have to say is we need to not lose our grip on games in the final minutes, because everything else we've done excellently in the first 21 games in this Liga Adelante.
What can we expect from Ponferradina in the second half of the season? Who are your biggest rivals? Fofo: Attain 50 points. If we do that with enough games to go before the season's end we could well get into the playoffs. Everyone knows how humble this side is, and therefore our primary objective will be to secure safety in the division as soon as possible. With regards to the rivals, RCD Mallorca, Real Zaragoza and UD Las Palmas could be up there. The truth is you don't know in a season like this with such equality, it's difficult; therefore I'm sure there will be a surprise or two.
With Liga Adelante so close, can you think about gaining automatic promotion to Liga BBVA? Fofo: Yes, but we're also conscious that the opposite could happen and we could end up low down. We take it step by step; firstly to assure our safety, if the playoffs are a possibility then great and then promotion is something we see as a long shot right now, but it's there. If the league carries on in such an equal manner, it could be us who go up directly. People joke about it in the changing rooms, but honestly, to gain promotion to Liga BBVA would be a dream come true for a humble team like Ponferradina.