Ceballos to sign for Real Madrid after rejecting new Betis contract

After weeks of rumours and uncertainty, it looks like the Dani Ceballos saga is finally going to be over and completed in the next few hours after the player flew up to Madrid on Sunday evening.

With him always likely to leave, many Betis fans were hopeful the young superstar to-be would sign a new contract and gather more la liga experience before flying the nest, not to mention increase his buy-out clause in the meantime. However, it looks like Dani is seizing the opportunity whilst it’s there and is set to sign on the dotted line for the Primera and Champions League winners.

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Sergio León welcomed home – forward signs 4-year deal

Seven years after leaving Betis for Reus, Sergio León finally returns home. The 28 year old, originally from Cordoba, has signed a four year contract at the Benito Villamarin after departing from relegated Osasuna. In doing so he becomes the first signing of new manager Quique Setién and newly instated sporting director Lorenzo Serra Ferrer.

León started his footballing career at Betis back in 2004 at the tender age of 15. After four years in the youth teams, he moved up to Betis C and then Betis B in 2009. He made his one and only league appearance for the first team in 2010 during a 1-0 loss against Girona. Not surprisingly, Betis were relegated that season.

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Betis starlet Roberto Gonzalez on the brink of Manchester United

It looks like highly promising Betis youngster Roberto Gonzalez is on the verge of joining Jose Mourinho and co. at Manchester United. In fact, he would be joining up with the Manchester United academy currently under the guidance of former midfielder Nicky Butt. However, the management at Betis have not given up on keeping the young star at Betis.

There was been growing hype around the 16 year old, who hails from Merida in Extremadura, since he was first called up to the Spanish Under-16 set-up in the autumn last year, before playing at the under 16 international tournament at St George’s Park, England, in February this year. He’s an attacking forward and has been playing for the Cadete A youth team, three levels below Betis B, who have just won promotion back up to the Segunda B.

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3 More New Signings

As far as pre-seasons go, this will go down as smooth by Betis’ standards. The club have now played seven matches and remain unbeaten with their only non-win coming via a 1-1 draw with Everton. Since my last post they have beaten Fulham, Werder Bremen and Sporting Portugal and have won the Dresden Cup.

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Dresden Cup winners

There is definitely a buzz around the place and an excitement for La Liga to start, even if our first fixture is the hardest of the lot – away to Barcelona. Things just don’t run this smoothly for Betis going off past experience, but perhaps now is the time for a change in fortune?

One thing that certainly is changing, is the squad personnel. A few weeks ago I brought you a run down of the six new faces that will be appearing in green and white next season (if you’ve forgotten about or would like to take another look at Rizi Durmisi, Jonas Martin, Charly Musonda, Nahuel, Felipe Gutiérrez or Aissa Mandi then venture back here.)

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Sanabria – Who Is He & What’s He About?

Paraguayan forward Tonny Sanabria jetted into Sevilla last night to prepare for his move to Real Betis and become the 7th signing of the pre-season. He was met at San Pablo airport by Miguel Torrecilla and shortly after photographed with a verdiblanco scarf to put any doubters at bay and give fans a real sense of anticipation.

On Wednesday he successfully completed his medical and will sign for Betis in the evening before joining his new teammates in Marbella.

Obviously Betis have made a large number of signings the past couple of seasons but this one seems different. More significant. As mentioned in my previous blog, we’ve already made six very good signings but this almost seems like a steppe change for the club. Last summer, yes, we had the likes of Joaquín and Van der Vaart join the club but these players are in the twilight of their career (VdV more towards midnight) – Sanabria isn’t though.

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Sanabria – who he is and what he’s about

Paraguayan forward Tonny Sanabria jetted into Sevilla last night to prepare for his move to Real Betis and become the 7th signing of the pre-season. He was met at San Pablo airport by Miguel Torrecilla and shortly after photographed with a verdiblanco scarf to put any doubters at bay and give fans a real sense of anticipation.

On Wednesday he successfully completed his medical and will sign for Betis in the evening before joining his new teammates in Marbella.

Obviously Betis have made a large number of signings the past couple of seasons but this one seems different. More significant. As mentioned in my previous blog, we’ve already made six very good signings but this almost seems like a steppe change for the club. Last summer, yes, we had the likes of Joaquín and Van der Vaart join the club but these players are in the twilight of their career (VdV more towards midnight) – Sanabria isn’t though.

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Sales, Shirts and Sanabria

As always there have been a lot happenings at Betis in the past week or two. We’ve had new signings, big players going, season ticket sales, part of the stadium being knocked down and three new kits shown off to the media and fans alike.

Sanabria to Betis almost a done deal after rejecting Spurs

sanabriaBetis have already made 6 very good signing (on paper at least) – all of whom I wrote about here. In that post I mentioned that the club are still looking for at least 4 more players and one of these looks like it’s going to be Antonio ‘Tony’ Sanabria, which I think could be an even more exciting prospects than the others!

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6 new signings with more to come

The less said about England and Spain in Euro 2016 the better……

Betis could however learn a thing or two from the ‘lesser’ countries who have prospered so far. I’m thinking of Wales and more specifically Iceland, who have performed superbly. Without having the best individuals their team has excelled. It may be a bit cliché but they are following on in Leicester’s impressive footsteps.

Another glaringly brilliant example that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Iceland’s defensive set-up has been immense, the players are incredibly well-drilled but they also break forward with purpose, intent and skill. Their tactics and teamwork have brought them to the quarter finals of the Euros and I definitely think Gus Poyet should be making a note in regards to Lars Lagerbäck’s approach. On a personal level I should also be making a note of Iceland’s (the frozen food company) marketing strategy as they played a blinder!

Back to Betis News

It’s been reported today that los verdiblancos have secured their 5th and 6th signings of the close season in Felipe Gutiérrez and Aissa Mandi. This comes after the club have announced that Durmisi, Jonas Martin, Nahuel and Musonda will all be playing in green and white next season. Let’s have a quick look at them all.

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 20.53.06Riza Durmisi – Tricky, skilful, small Danish left back signed from Brondby for €2m. He has signed a 5 year contract at the club and his buyout clause has increased to €20m! Having done a bit of research he looks great going forward and looks like he’ll be able to provide some genuine threat on the left (reminds me of Jordi Alba) but there’s nothing too clear cut about his defensive qualities. He was the player of the year at Brondby last season and looks to have nailed down his place as Denmark’s left-back at the age of 22. Could be one to watch.

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Jonas Martin – The Frenchman is a good all-round central midfielder. He’s 26 years old and signed from Montpellier for €3m. He can play further back in a defensive role/double pivot or slightly more forward around the centre circle but getting forward and joining the attacking plays. Although he doesn’t score many goals he has got good nerve on him, can pick a pass and can took away a penalty. He can also use both feet and likes to keep possession. Can be a calm influence for Betis this season.

castro and musondaCharly Musonda – We already know quite a lot about this 19 year old attack minded Belgian. He’s back at Betis on loan from Chelsea but for the whole season this time. He sparked life into a rather dull team last season when he joined in January and every single Betis fan I know is glad that he is back at el Benito Villamarín.

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Matías ‘Nahuel’ Leiva Esquivel – known just as Nahuel, he’s a 19 year old winger on loan from Villarreal with the option to buy. In short he is a real talent with huge potential but not quick ‘knocking down any doors’ (as Miguel Verdugo put it for Beticismo.net).

He has great speed and explosiveness and can go either down the line on the left or cut inside. Looking forward to see him play, especially countering Betis forward. He was also born in Rosario, the same place as one Lionel Messi, therefore he must be good. Despite this he has featured for Spain’s U19s and U21s after coming over to Villarreal when he was 19.  

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 20.53.38Felipe Gutiérrez – 26 year old central midfield joins from FC Twente on a 5 year contract. He’s played in Holland since 2012 as well as featuring 29 times for Chile. Rather ironically, his arrival could spell fellow countryman Lolo Reyes’ departure. He appears calm and classy on the ball and possesses a good left foot. Also has a tenacious streak (as most South Americans do) which is much needed for Betis in the middle of the field. Looks like Betis are splashing out around €3m on Gutiérrez, so he must be promising!

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 21.12.20.pngAissa Mandi  – 24 year old French-Algerian has signed a 5 year contract from French side Stade de Reims for €3-4m. He plays mostly as a right full back but can also play centre back. Betis have struggled for many years now to find a decent, consistent full back, hopefully Mandi will put this to bed. At 6’1″ he’s a tall lateral but seems well equipped going forward as well as good tactical awareness at the back. He was linked heavily with newly promoted Premier League club Middlesborough earlier this month but it is Betis who have put pen to paper.

New Sporting Director Miguel Torrecilla is certainly doing what he set out to do when he joined Betis a few months ago and he hopes to make a further 4-6 signings to finish off the squad. There are also a number of players who need to be offloaded to make room for all these new players, so we’ll be keeping tabs on this in the coming months.

 

News update – signings, money and Euro 2016

It doesn’t seem like five minutes since the season finished, but Real Betis are already a club on the move. With Gus Poyet at the helm and new Sporting Director Miguel Torrecilla hitting the ground running, things are moving quickly again at the club.

Signings and potentials

First signing of the season was Riza Durmisi. He’s a very promising 22 year old Danish full back who likes to get forward. He’s already played 10 times for the national team including the other day against Bosnia where it’s reported he had a very good game, helping to set up two goals. Last season the left-footer was making a good name for himself and attracting attention all over Europe, including from Everton. In 2015 he won Brondy Player of the Year which inclined Betis to activate his €2m release clause and sign a 5 year deal.

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43,000 – La Mejor Aficion

43000

This post doesn’t need to many words really. Yesterday, the club passed a huge landmark when the sold season ticket number 43,000 – the most ever sold by the club.

I’ve mentioned on here before the vastness of that number in comparison to a number of European footballing giants. What an achievement.

Now, with the return of Señor Sanchez almost 10 years after he left, the club has a buzz around the place. 20,000 fans went to the stadium to welcome their hero back. I don’t think I have ever seen a happier player being unveiled. He was genuinely beaming and absolutely bursting with pride to grace his sevillano home once more.

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