Malaga vs Elche preview - No let-up from Escriba

Posted Sunday, May 03, 2015 by PA

Coach Fran Escriba has promised Elche will not take their foot off the accelerator in their final four league matches even though they are so close to clinching survival.

Wednesday's emphatic 4-0 win over Deportivo La Coruna took the Alicante club up to 37 points for the season, eight clear of the relegation zone.

But ahead of his side's trip to Malaga, the coach warned his players of the danger of taking their eye off the prize.

"It would be very stupid of us to drop our intensity now, especially when you consider how hard our rivals are going to play against us," Escriba told a press conference.

A win at Malaga could see Elche secure survival mathematically, depending on how other results go over the weekend, and the coach admitted his side are looking forward to bringing a dramatic season on and off the pitch to a close.

"There is a certain amount of excitement about the season ending," he said.

"At this club it's not just about the 38 matches, there are many other things that take their toll on you," he added, alluding to the fact the players have gone weeks without receiving their wages, after agreeing to reduce their salaries at the start of the season.

Elche have pulled themselves into the comfortable position of 13th in the Primera Division after winning three of their last four matches, and their impressive run of form is in stark contrast to Malaga, who sit in seventh place but have not won any of their last seven matches.

"What worries me the most about Malaga is that they have not been getting good results recently," explained Escriba.

"The fact they are in desperate need of points to fight for seventh place means they will come out really strong at their ground, where their fans always get behind them."

Elche's only absentees for the match are Jose Angel Alonso and Edu Albacar, while Malaga coach Javi Gracia has a full squad to choose from after Ignacio Camacho recovered from a muscle injury.

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