Alaves coach Pablo Machin has attempted to play down the expectations surrounding former Aston Villa man Jota, telling SportsFinding that the play-maker cannot be viewed as the ‘saviour’ of the club’s La Liga season.
The Basque outfit certainly have a track record when it comes to helping talented players get their careers back on track after miserable spells in the Premier League.
Joselu and Lucas Perez couldn’t hit a barn door with the proverbial banjo at Newcastle and West Ham.
But, across 2019/20, a classic ‘big man, little man’ partnership combined to score 22 La Liga goals and keep Alaves’s heads above water.
After falling out of favour at Aston Villa, Jota will be hoping to have a similar impact at the Mendizorrotza.
But with Alaves already stuck in the relegation zone after just one win in six matches, the under-pressure Machin believes Jota should not be seen as an immediate antidote for a side with its fair share of problems.
“Jota Peleteiro is coming to help and to complement (the rest of the attack). It is not a question of him arriving and being the saviour,” the former Sevilla boss said of the one-time Brentford winger, who played 62 minutes in Sunday’s 2-0 home defeat to newly-promoted Elche.
Aston Villa paid bitter rivals Birmingham City £4 million for Jota as recently as May 2019. But, just one year and four Premier League starts later, his contract was ended.
While Villa are one of only two clubs in a major European league with a 100 per cent record thus far, Jota and Alaves are already glancing nervously over their shoulder.