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Valencia coach Nuno Espirito Santo insists his side cannot be distracted by the imminent departure of Nicolas Otamendi as they prepare for the first leg of their Champions League playoff against Monaco on Wednesday.
Monaco more important than Otamendi for Valencia boss 
08/18/2015
 

Valencia coach Nuno Espirito Santo insists his side cannot be distracted by the imminent departure of Nicolas Otamendi as they prepare for the first leg of their Champions League playoff against Monaco on Wednesday.


The Argentine centre-back was Los Che's player of the year last season as they moved to the brink of a return to the Champions League after a three-year absence.


However, reports in Spain suggest the 27-year-old is on the verge of a move to Manchester City.


"The most important thing is the game tomorrow," said Nuno at his pre-match press conference on Tuesday.


"We have known for some time that we are going to prepare for this game without the option of Otamendi, but the important thing is that we are going to play a fundamental match for us."


A meeting with last season's quarter-finalists was the most difficult tie on offer to Valencia as a seeded side as they hope to make it a record five Spanish teams into the group stages.


And Nuno believes it is the most evenly balanced of the qualifiers to be played this week.


"Clearly it is the most balanced playoff. We are two teams with a clear intention of qualifying taking into account the quality of our squads."


Monaco, though, are also hampered by the absence of key players with the influential trio of Joao Moutinho, Layvin Kurzawa and Aymen Abdennour missing out through injury.


"Monaco are a very good team with a lot of variety and players of great quality," added Nuno.


"We know that they won't be at full strength, but we can't think that is going to make it easier"

Source: afp
 
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