Aissa Mandi was never a friend of rushing. He did not have them when in the summer of 2017 he was one step away from leaving Betis before convincing Quique Setién and becoming their most efficient center-back. He does not have them now, with his contract about to expire in Heliópolis and the doubts placed on his future after four and a half seasons in the Verdiblanco team. After missing several games this season due to sanctions and Covid, Mandi won the confidence of Pellegrini and against Huesca he was a decisive piece by scoring the first goal for his team. The Algerian has three goals in this championship. No other LaLiga defender has more goals to his credit than the footballer (Burgos, from Eibar, also has three) from Betis and that becomes another incentive in full negotiation for a renewal full of edges. Betis want to stay with Mandi and the player wants to continue in Heliópolis. It is the main premise in a relationship that has more uncertainty than expected.
At the beginning of the campaign, everything seemed a matter of fringes. The sports director, Antonio Cordón, affirmed that the renewal of the center was already being negotiated and that the positions were close. The reality was on the table, but discrepancies also arose on some points. The club’s economic possibilities are limited and the leaders raised some doubts after the player’s irregular start to the season. Meanwhile, the central wants a project that looks to Europe and that his alliance with Manuel Pellegrini is continued. For the coach, the player is essential in his scheme and that is how he transferred it to the club when referring to the issue of his future and renewal. The next few months will be key as there is already the possibility of other clubs negotiating unilaterally with the Algerian.
* Data updated as of January 12, 2021
The current Pellegrini scheme finds in Mandi an important asset for its rear. Within a network full of deficiencies that is reflected in the fact that Betis is the team that receives the most goals from LaLiga, the central defender provides a certain solvency in the exit of the ball and also it is more expeditious than its competitors by the position. His goal against Huesca launches a new message to the sports management, which also has several defensive assets on its agenda for this winter market if they finally find economic threads to pull to strengthen the team.
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