2011-12 Champions League: DNQ
How They Qualified for 2012-13: 4th place in La Liga, defeated Panathinaikos 2-0 on aggregate in playoff round
Manager: Manuel Pellegrini (third season)
Captain: Jesús Gámez
Stadium: La Rosaleda (cap: 29,500)
Key Additions: Fabrice Olinga (forward)
Key Departures: Santi Cazorla (midfield), Jose Rondon (center forward), Apono (central midfield), Xavi Torres (midfield), Ruud van Nistelrooy (forward, retirement)
After all the financial problems swirling about the club this summer, Tuesday night's qualification in Athens to the group stages of the Champions League had to serve as a wonderful measure of respite from the storm.
Malaga were far and away the better side over the two legs—although on-loan midfielder Cissokho is one to watch for Panathinaikos this season—and while there is a dearth of depth in the squad, the first team has some very, very good players who just might pull a coup.
Replacing the goals provided by van Nistelrooy may be the biggest problem Pellegrini faces during Champions League play, but Olinga has looked very lively in the early going this season and became the youngest player ever to score in a La Liga match on the opening day.
The midfield, even without the likes of Cazorla, remains the powerhouse of the side. Jeremy Toulalan continues to look 45 while playing like the (almost) 29-year-old he really is (all jokes aside, he was excellent in the playoff round) and Joaquin provides bags of experience, not to mention quality from spot kicks.
The young man everyone will be watching is Isco, but he is surrounded by a number of talented technicians with the inclination to attack. Eliseu has a wonderful left foot and showed the ability to embark upon rampaging runs into the attacking area. Diego Buennanote is of slight build, but can provide that final pass in the danger area.
Julio Baptista remains a long-term injury worry, but if the Brazilian can regain fitness and round into form, Pellegrini could have an Ace card waiting in the wings.
Player to Watch: Francisco Román Alarcón Suárez (Isco)
It all begins and ends with the young Spaniard. Blessed with that tremendous presence and tight control that befits every midfielder of his generation, the Malaga talisman has also shown a nose for goal.
His quality in the attack could very well make the difference for Malaga as they embark upon this European campaign. It was his delightful assist that helped open the scoring in the first leg of the tie, and he continually showed the sort of wondrous dexterity that could unlock defenses to come.
CD Málaga, the predecessor to the edition seen today, had a reserve club, founded on May 25, 1948 when CD Málaga took over a junior club, CD Santo Tomás, with the purpose of establishing a reserve team.
The club was renamed Club Atlético Malagueño, reviving the name of one of the two clubs that had merged to form CD Málaga in 1933.
During the 1959–60 season, CA Malagueño and CD Málaga found themselves together in the third level. As a reserve team, the former should have been relegated. To avoid this, they separated from their parent club and registered as an independent club with the Royal Spanish Football Federation.
In 1992, when CD Málaga dissolved after financial difficulties, CA Malagueño continued playing. The 1992–93 season saw them playing in Tercera División Group 9. After a successful campaign, the club was promoted to Segunda División B.
However, the following season the club was relegated again and, facing financial difficulties, were in danger of folding. On December 19, 1993, in a referendum, the club's members voted in favour of changing names and, on June 29, 1994 CA Malagueño changed their name to Málaga Club de Fútbol S.A.D., becoming an official successor to what was previously called Club Deportivo Málaga (Information courtesy of Wikipedia).