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Alfred N'Diaye completes loan move to Malaga

The midfielder was unveiled on Calle Larios just before the start of the city's fair.
The midfielder was unveiled on Calle Larios just before the start of the city's fair. / Ñito Salas
  • Forwards Dani Pacheco and Mamadou Koné are also set to finalise moves, taking the tally for the week up to six

Alfred N'Diaye is the latest new name to sign up to the Malaga project for next season after completing a season-long loan move from Villarreal.

N'Diaye, who spent last season on loan at Wolverhampton Wanderers, was officially presented by the club on Friday, on the central Calle Larios.

The high-energy anchorman, 28, will add both strength and leadership to the Blue and Whites' midfield and could partner Moroccan Badr Boulahroud in the centre.

"Malaga is a big team in Spain and it's also a very famous city. Everyone knows it; coming here is something special," he said.

The Senegalese midfielder, who will wear the number 21, added: "I know the club has high expectations of me but I don't feel under pressure. I have a lot of experience in football.

"I know what my qualities are and I've come to help the team have the best season possible. Segunda is a complicated division."

Pacheco deal close

Another player set to follow in the door at La Rosaleda is Getafe attacking midfielder Dani Pacheco. The former Barcelona and Liverpool youngster, who was born in Pizarra, is close to sealing a move which has been on the cards all summer.

Despite interest from other clubs such as Las Palmas and Deportivo, Pacheco's desire has always been to move to Malaga. Because of this, the club completed more time-sensitive signings first, as they knew he didn't want to move anywhere else.

Pacheco is wanted by Muñiz, above all, for his set-piece expertise, but also his record of having gained promotion to the top flight on four occasions (with Norwich City, Betis, Alavés and Getafe).

Unlike the majority of the club's signings this summer, Pacheco is expected to complete a permanent transfer on a three-year contract.

Six signings in a week

It may have taken a while for the Malaga transfer machine to get into gear, but the club is now making up for lost time and is close to welcoming six new arrivals in the space of a week.

After defender Ignasi Miquel completed a 3.5-million-euro move to Getafe, as well as last week's loan departure of Michael Santos to Leganés, funds and squad places have been freed up for Malaga to bring in new players.

On Monday, centre-back Pau Torres joined from Villarreal on a season-long loan deal; the 21-year-old will compete for a starting place with Luis Hernández and Diego González.

Torres is one of Villarreal's top prospects at present and has already made seven first-team appearances, including one in the Europa League.

Sporting director José Luis Caminero also hopes to add an experienced centre-half to the squad before the close of the window with Sporting Gijón's Álex Pérez top of the list, though Malaga have been told by the Asturian side that they must increase their opening offer. This comes after coach Juan Ramón Muñiz decided that veteran Miguel Torres was not part of his plans.

The second arrival on Monday was West Ham winger Sead Haksabanovic. The Montenegrin, who turned 19 in May, also joins on loan having been persuaded by former Malaga boss, Manuel Pellegrini (now at West Ham), that the Costa club was somewhere that would encourage his development.

Most comfortable on the left-hand side, Haksabanovic made his debut in the Swedish league at just 15 and is already a full international with Montenegro.

A new number nine

With Youssef En-Nesyri close to joining Michael Santos at Leganés in a five-million-euro transfer, Malaga moved quickly to secure a loan deal completed for Shakhtar Donetsk forward Gustavo Blanco.

The 26-year-old will most likely be the leading striker for the coming season, having been assigned the number nine shirt.

Until now he has been something of a journeyman, playing for clubs in his native Argentina, Morocco, Russia and Ukraine, where he caught the attention of current Malaga head coach Juan Ramón Muñiz, who was assistant manager to Juande Ramos at Dnipro and still has connections there.

The striking department could be completed by Ivorian Mamadou Koné, 26, who could join on loan as part of the En-Nesyri deal.

More to come

These six will certainly not be the last players to arrive before the start of the season. Up to four more could yet be welcomed at La Rosaleda with the club actively looking for a centre-back, as mentioned previously, but also a goalkeeper and a right-back after both Andrés Prieto and Roberto Rosales told the club that they were seeking pastures new.

Another winger is also on the wish-list but is not the greatest priority at present.