The current season has headed towards the final stretch with many issues yet to be defined. Athletic, for example, lives under the obsession to return to Europe four years later. If Marcelino, one of the most renowned technicians in Spain, does not succeed, the feeling that the current generation does not give for ambitious goals will increase. For now, he crosses his fingers so that the seventh classified has that continental ticket. With Villarreal’s defeat yesterday, they can be one point away from that rung this midday. Elche visits San Mamés with another idea, that of scoring points to move even further away from a relegation that follows six points after the defeat of Mallorca a few hours ago (follow today’s game live on As.com).
The long break has given in Bilbao to chew the disappointment for the latest results, the defeat against Betis and the tie in San Mamés against Getafe that prevented them from approaching the noble zone. There has been talk of elections, the possible start-up of an Animation Stand and even the umpteenth recruitment attempt with the Williams by Ghana, the country of birth of the father of the lions, with the juicy offer of the nearby 2022 World Cup The answer, the same as always: they bet on Spain.
This culmination of the course between April and May will define whether San Mamés achieves a pass or a fail. It is not being all bad after reaching the Super Cup final and the Cup semifinals. But not getting a European ticket, and, even more, not being able to fight it until the last sip, would deepen the disappointment that a large sector of the fans has red and white for not having left Valencia in the gutter and achieved the third consecutive final of the KO tournament.
To try to avoid that feeling of emptiness, the team led by Marcelino He sees a victory against a team profile that has been fatal latelythat of a rival from the bottom of the table. The enemies of the lower part that give him the ball and await him in battleships choke him throughout the season. The height of this trend were the defeats against Rayo and Cádiz. Granada and Getafe have also fished in the Bilbao fiefdom, a draw for each one.
Therefore, it is not presumed that the clash will be easy for an Athletic team that, in addition, is weakened in its defensive part, without the central defenders and the retaining wall of Dani García. Iñigo Martínez drags a muscular overload and Yeray is sanctioned. Zumarraga’s midfielder has pubic problems and could have to undergo surgery in the summer. The one who will still be out for a few days is Lekue, due to a muscle injury. Marcelino sowed yesterday the doubt of who will accompany Vivian in the center of the rear, whether it will be Núñez or Balenziaga. If the first is not the chosen one, he would be absolutely marked, it would be a blow from which to see if he gets up. Sancet also has pubic pains, but they are mild.
Elche wants to achieve the second victory in its history in San Mamés. The people of Elche believe in their options after having shown their faces, always with Francisco on the bench, in the stadiums of all the greats. At the Santiago Bernabéu, for example, they scratched a draw and deserved victory.
Francisco has recovered this week, without problems, his three internationals; the Colombian Mojica (inconvenient and in cotton balls; if he doesn’t play, Olaza will start), the Chilean Enzo Roco and the Argentine debutant Boyé, who will be Athletic’s great threat. There will also be Helibelton Palacios, who has been adding to the work as the days have passed and points to eleven. There is no alternative on the right side, since Barragán is suspended. In any case, the franjiverde team will go out with its gala eleven to seek a triumph of prestige and tranquility.