After a long, boring 2 weeks of international football, we’re finally back in action. It’s been a long 2 weeks since we last saw Xaviball in action, so its exciting to finally see us back in action. Tonight, live from the Montjuic, we are going to be up against Athletic Club. Live at 9pm local time. Like always, games against Bilbao are never easy. They seem to down tools against the other big sides, but play with their lives against us. But i guess that’s like most teams in the league. It’s going to be a quick preview today, so lets jump straight into it.
A quick look at our opponent:
Athletic Club are one of the 3 teams in La Liga, including Barcelona and Real that have never been relegated from the first division. And that perfectly sums them up. They are a rock solid la liga team, with some very good players that can always do damage. We’ve seen players like Aduriz hurt us in the past. And we still get that now with the old guard of Iñaki Williams and Muniain. And now also with the upcoming generation of talent like Nico Williams and Sancet. Bilbao are a solid team, always fighting near the top end of the table. Of course, their coach has a lot of connections with us in the recent past. Ernesto Valverde has restored them into a very solid team, that is difficult to break down. And thats what we;re going to be up against tonight.
When it comes to the lineup vs Athletic, there aren’t many additions from our last game against Granada. Kounde picked up an injury in that game, meaning that we are now without him until at least the beginning of November. What’s good, is that we have depth in that position, including an ex Bilbao player in Iñigo Martinez. So it’ll be interesting to see if he starts the game. Personally, I think he has a lot of chances to start mainly because Araujo only just played 2-3 days ago and he’s fresh off a long journey from Uruguay. So it probably wouldn’t be the wisest thing to start him, especially with El Clásico right around the corner.
Balde and Yamal both suffered knocks before and during the international break, but thankfully they’re both expected to be in the squad for tonight’s game. Roberto is injured so apart from Cancelo, we have no other player in the squad who plays at right back. Which is why it looks like young Hector Fort will be called up for the game. In midfield, things remain the same, as well as in attack. Although it looks like Lewandowski and Raphinha aren’t too far away from making a return.
My starting lineup:
Cancelo- Christensen- Iñigo- Balde
Gavi- Romeu- Gundogan
Yamal- Ferran- Felix