RCD Mallorca’s stunning 3-0 victory at Son Moix on Sunday saw ecstatic scenes as the team were promoted back to La Liga after an absence of 6 seasons. The jubilant fans inside Son Moix and those many thousands who attended the victory parade have had their minds firmly on the remarkable events of the previous 72 hours. Whilst the players strained every sinew of their being to achieve the impossible, Vicente Moreno and his technical team know that now the hard work begins.
Priority 1: The Mister
The most important signing that RCD Mallorca need to make this season is manager Vicente Moreno and his technical team. Throughout the season there were rumours of him being linked with La Liga sides and questions asked to him about his future. The Valencian coach always refused to confirm or deny any reports, preferring to keep his mind on the task at hand. Following what is now two successive promotions in guiding RCD Mallorca from the Segunda B up to La Liga, Moreno´s services were bound to be sought after. Whilst he is yet to sign any further extension of his contract that runs until the Summer of 2020, Mallorca fans will be more relaxed about his immediate future at least. To avoid any further speculation, Maheta Molango would do well to get this particular contract extended as soon as possible.
Priority 2: The Loanees
RCD Mallorca’s success has been built on a mixture of players retained from the Segunda B and loanees. Of the regular 11, there were left back Pervis Estupiñan, central defender Martin Valjent and centre forward Ante Budimir who all contributed heavily to the success of the side. Sadly, Estupiñan has already departed to promoted rivals Osasuna and will now require replacing. However, RCD Mallorca have confirmed the permanent signing of Slovakian Martin Valjent for what is reported to be a bargain 1.5 million Euros and only today, that of forward Ante Budimir.
Priority 3: New Signings
New signings are inevitable and very much needed if RCD Mallorca are going to stay up in La Liga. However, Maheta Molango has stated that the club will keep together the nucleus of the promotion winning side and try to add just 6 or 7 players to the squad in order to strengthen. Mallorca’s home form was incredible all season but they cannot solely rely on that to accumulate the necessary points when the big boys come to town. New signings will be needed but they will fit into two categories. Firstly, new contracts for players who they wish to secure on longer terms. The main person this refers to is central defender Antonio Raillo who was subject to an offer from English Championship side Nottingham Forest in the January window. Mallorca will hope to extend his contract, increase the release clause and, if the worst happens and they are relegated next season, wish Raillo well with a bumper transfer fee come Summer 2020.
Moreno’s technical team have shown that they have been working hard on additions to the squad before Mallorca even knew which division they would be in next season. In the 72 hours following their promotion the club have been linked with a number of players to bolster the squad. None are yet to be confirmed other than Valjent and Budimir, but the links continue to rain in. RCD Mallorca look to have beaten Malaga to the free signing of out of contract midfielder Josep Señé. They are also heavily linked with Pablo Chavarria, centre forward of French Ligue 1 side Stade de Reims. Real Sociedad goalkeeper Miguel Ángel Moyá is also strongly linked with the club and would presumably be keen to return home to Mallorca. The experienced goalkeeper, sold by Mallorca to Valencia in 2009, has played at the highest level for a number of years.
Priority 4: The Fixtures
Mallorca fans, as excited as they will be by the new signings, will also be looking forward to the release of the fixtures. They will want to know when the big two, Real Madrid and Barcelona, are visiting the island as well as when they should plan away trips to some of the biggest grounds in world football. The fixtures will be announced next week on Thursday 4th July at 1pm Spanish time. This will also be an important date for Vicente Moreno and his technical team who will have no break this Summer as they plan how to stay in the division next year. The opening day of the La Liga season will be the 16th of August, leaving only 7 weeks of preparation following the play off final win.
Priority 5: Maintain the Spirit
One of RCD Mallorca´s biggest strengths this season has been the spirit of the squad. Players have contributed off the bench and been supportive of their team mates when they have had to drop out. Moreno and his technical team have forged a tight knit group with competition for places. Promotion will bring more defeats and it remains to be seen how the squad reacts to going on a run or 5 or 6 games without a win next season. Add to that the potential group cohesion issues around bringing new personalities into the squad, regular players´ places being threatened and there becomes a potential melting pot of trouble for the Mister.
The Right Man at the Helm
What we can all be sure of is that in the Valencian, RCD Mallorca has a steady hand on the helm of the ship. Whilst managing at the top level of Spanish football will bring new challenges for Moreno and his staff, nobody can argue that he and his team deserve and have earnt the right to manage in La Liga. After a promotion with Gimnastic and achieving the play offs the following season he then dropped back in the Segunda B with Mallorca. Successive promotions later he finds himself in La Liga. Cometh the hour cometh the man, now the hard work begins.