Everyone was waiting for his introduction. As he walked on their was a huge round of applause, but the show had already been stolen because two minutes earlier José Luis Mendilíbar had put Roland Lamah on and although Arda Turan made an impression on his debut, it was now Swansea City striker Lamah that made everyone sit up and pay attention.
Born in the Ivory Coast, he has represented Belgium from Under 19 level up and is part of a very young and potentially exciting Belgian side. The midfielder has just turned 25 and has made a name for himself since joining for just €1m from French side Le Mans.
He was usually put out on the left wing, where he made darting runs and skipped past defenders but was on occasion played up front. Last year Osasuna sat high in the league and they were unlucky not to secure European football but this year it has been a very different story with the club stuck in the relegation zone.
Lamah can also be used a striker but this season he has only scored twice and has been used as sub in no less than eight games. While he has lost some of his spark there is no denying that Michael Laudrup knows a bargain when he sees it and he was keen to add the player to his already growing Spanish revolution.
Last week former Villarreal midfielder Jonathan de Guzmán, currently on loan with Swansea, made comments were he said that he believed the player would settle easily in the Premier League, adding that he knew the player when they both played in Holland and that his pace and strength could cause many defences problems.
This weekend against Real Madrid, Lamah wasn’t even on the bench and this suggested that a deal was not far form being concluded. On Monday the Navarre Press were quick to deny a deal but later in the day it was announced that the player had joined on loan and depending on who you read it is a 6 or 18 month deal.
Osasuna are keen to sell so they can use the money to bring in a replacement. Lamah’s release clause is just €7m but it is believed that Osasuna may be willing to settle for far less, around €2-3m may make the deal permanent.