Roberto Soldado has declared that 2011-12 will be a great season for Valencia, following a dramatic 4-3 win at the weekend to start the campaign that included a hat-trick for striker.
Soldado, who netted 18 goals last season to finish as Los Che’s top-scorer, took the captain’s armband for the first time this weekend, as Valencia welcomed Racing Santander and former Coach Hector Cuper to Mestalla.
The striker’s hat-trick – that included opening the scoring on two minutes and then finishing it with two goals in the last two minutes of the game – has been followed by his optimistic message to supporters: “Surely,
Former Getafe man Soldado also praised the fans’ support in a game that saw Soldado also net a 7th-minute own goal from a Kennedy Bakircioglu corner, and the home side fall 3-1 down at one stage: “What we experienced at Mestalla was inspirational. When the game was complicated, the fans supported us more. You have to give thanks to that, and aspire to reward their efforts with many highs this season.”
Soldado is the fifth Valencia player to score a hat-trick on the opening weekend of the season, 17 years on from when Predrag Mijatovic was the last to do so with a treble at Atletico Madrid’s Calderon. Stretching back into the end of last season, Soldado has scored 15 goals in his last 10 La Liga appearances.