While Vila-real was living a dream similar to that of 2006 with his football team again in a Champions League semi-final, one of his youth football talents was experiencing a failed Erasmus at Espanyol. Manu Morlanes, in the absence of four days to finish the championship, has suffered a different campaign than the one he lived with Almería last yearwhen he was one of the mainstays of a team that was fighting for direct promotion until the final stretch of the championship.
The man from Zaragoza has not been able to play the role that was predestined for him, a victim of the overbooking of midfielders, the style of play and those opportunities that came his way during the course and he was unable to take advantage of. Morlanes has been a starter in ten games and has participated in a total of 26, so he has acted more as a complement at certain times of the season than as a regular player in the lineup. Keidi Bare, Sergi Darder and Yangel Herrera have been the most used.
Interestingly, Morlanes made his debut at the RCDE Stadium against Villarreal on matchday two of the championship (0-0). Vicente Moreno’s idea was to fit him into a more associative midfield with Sergi Darder and Yangel Herreraalthough the injury of the Venezuelan, who did not play until November, caused the 4-4-2 to alternate with the 4-3-3 at the beginning and players like Fran Mérida or Óscar Melendo also had their minutes in that central area.
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From matchday 4 to 12, it was time for the young midfielder. He started in four games, including those against Atlético de Madrid (1-2) and Athletic Club (1-1), but he participated as the first substitute in most of them. Espanyol added 12 points out of a possible 24, a good figure, but their luck began to change in Getafe. He was a starter at the Colisuem but Espanyol lost 2-1 in a bad match against the bottom team.
The player did not start again until matchday 17 against Levante, but Moreno kept him a second chance. Unfortunately, the team’s performance worsened. The footballer started from the start against Elche, Cádiz, Betis, Athletic and Barça, with a Espanyol that only got two of 15 points and put their safety distance at stake with relegation. Morlanes was injured and went four days without appearing, until he returned to being a regular replacement in the rest of the days. And now, with Keidi Bare’s injury, he hopes to at least end his failed Erasmus with a better face.