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Huercal Overa - What does the season hold in store?

This season, Total Football is focusing on Huercal Overa CDF - a club playing on the border of Almeria and Murcia, at the fourth tier in Spanish football.

There is a huge passion for the game in Spain, but we wanted to find out the real story behind a small club like Huercal Overa.

Here, Huercal Overa director Lee Rickard-Graham brings us up to speed with preparations for the start of the season.

Warming up

The final home warm up game for Huercal Overa CDF was staged at 'El Hornillo' on August 21st against CD Vera in front of a crowd of roughly 379.

We all know that pre-season games are not solely focused on getting the result as opposed to improving fitness levels and getting the team to gel, but this game was different with both teams looking for the win.

Huercal Overa had a slow start and didn’t really get moving until the 15th minute when a good move down the left side saw Sele fire just wide of the post.

CD Vera on the other hand had a great deal of possession and were constantly looking to get the ball wide on the right where they obviously felt the winger had the better of the Huercal Overa left back.

In the second half Huercal Overa showed their class and improved fitness to begin to create chance after chance with the opposition keeper doing well as he was forced into a number of saves.

He was beaten in the 37th minute with a well worked move down the right and a good ball slotted home by new signing Rafa Soriano.

The game ended 1-0 to Huercal Overa and the crowd walked away happy after some pleasing football ready for the first game of the season at home against El Palmar on September 2 at 18:00.

After the game coach Alonso Parra said: “The intention is to provide good quality football, I want the team and supporters to have fun.

"I'm happy with the group I have, they are all good people who I know well and trust. Looking to the league I know that there are five or six teams of very good quality and the rest will fight it out all season long.”

The end of the run in

Pre-season has come to an end and now we are looking forward to the first game of the season on September 2, it's a home game at El Hornillo against El Palmar in which we hope to have a full house of 1,500 supporters banging drums and waving flags.

It has been a difficult pre season due to the fact that promotion was achieved last year and the board of directors knew we had to add more quality to the squad, this is no mean feat as we don’t have the pull of bigger sides with a bigger budget and a larger community.

We are currently looking at options with clubs in the UK and Spain in which we could essentially be a feeder club, this would allow us to attract players that have had contracts run down and we can show that there is a clear development path into a larger club.

The local press have been fantastic in allowing us to promote the club via English and Spanish newspapers and websites that should raise awareness of the club.

Thus in turn give us much needed publicity so we can attract new sponsors and also be in a better position to sell advertising space inside and outside the stadium.

Season tickets have sold well over the summer with unconfirmed numbers at around 200 but the sales continue and we hope to have another 100 sold by the first game.

I have arranged some interviews with the players and these will be online soon which will give you an insight into the life of a semi pro player in Spain, I will hopefully get a view from the head coach and the president.

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