With the players reporting back for preseason this week, there have been very few changes to the Malaga playing squad.
Sporting director José Luis Caminero must first secure the departures of around ten players and is making some progress having terminated the contracts of Mehdi Lacen and Rajko Brežančić and received news from Miguel Torres that he would be retiring from the game.
This week the news centres around the futures of two wingers, Jony and Javi Ontiveros. The latter spent last season on loan at Deportivo Alavés and is already in Rome, set to seal another loan switch to Lazio. As stipulated in his contract, with Malaga in the second division Jony is free to complete a loan away from the club. However, with his contract set to expire next summer, Malaga will effectively be giving the player away for free.
One player they will be loath to lose is Ontiveros. The 21-year-old became a key player at the end of last season, attracting the interest of La Liga side Villarreal. According to SUR sources, negotiations between the two sides are ongoing and it is highly likely that a deal will be reached shortly.
N'Diaye: a wanted man
Talks with Villarreal are also ongoing on a different front. Alfred N'Diaye, who spent last season on loan at Malaga from the Yellow Submarine, is attracting the interest of a number of sides from Spain and England. However, as part of the original agreement, he is due to remain on the Costa for another season ahead of a compulsory purchase.
While coach Víctor Sánchez del Amo would like to build his team around the Senegalese midfielder, the club is torn over whether to proceed or seek a move to another club to reduce the financial risk should promotion not be achieved next season either.
The player himself is happy to stay at La Rosaleda but Getafe is ready to launch a bid. N'Diaye's entourage, however, would prefer to wait for the end of the English transfer window before making a decision, leaving Malaga in limbo.
Local boys on the market
The aforementioned transfers still won't plug the financial gap at the club. For this reason, two local players in the first-team squad, right-back Iván and midfielder Álex Mula, have been placed on the transfer list. Both have been offered around Segunda clubs to gauge interest in a transfer.
Another youngster, Hugo, however, looks set to sign a new deal. The 19-year-old winger impressed when he stepped up to the first team around the turn of the year and this is set to be rewarded with a new contract.