Gracia explains Atsu's substitution

Soccer News of Monday, 8 February 2016



Atsu MesMalaga’s Christian Atsu

Malaga manager Javi Gracia has thrown light on Christian Atsu’s early substitution in his side’s 3-0 win over Getafe in La Liga on Friday.

On his debut at la Rosaleda Stadium, the Ghana international scored Los Boquerones’ second goal in first half but was substituted during the recess.

And this has raised concerns that the winger may have suffered an injury setback, a situation which had bedeviled his earlier loan spell at English Premier League side Bournemouth.

“Atsu was somewhat worked out,” Gracia told his club’s official website.

“He had a good 45 minutes, and it did not make sense to expose him much more in the second half, as we had fresh players [on the bench].

“He did a good job and I am happy about that.

“We are changing our line up a lot due to player absence through injuries and suspensions. The players missing showed their level [earlier], and the team continued to perform well.

“That is credit to the players that, when some other players are not around, the team doesn’t fall apart.”

Atsu joined the Spanish side from Chelsea last month after struggling for playing time at Bournemouth. He made only two League Cup appearances for the Cherries.

Granada currently sit 10th on the league table ahead of a trip to Villarreal next weekend.