Lay the foundations of the new Athletic

The Athletic completed its second part of the summer. The departure in Lezama gave way to friendlies during his time at Germany. Drawing conclusions from these first “boluses” can be hasty because we have the feeling that Valverde he used them as an observation phase. The typical step when a new manager arrives at a club and wants to know firsthand what is available to them and prove that this is what pre-seasons are for.

so far, Chingurri He distributed the efforts and watched the potentiometer of his troops in the 300 minutes played: 45 against Borussia Monchengladbach and the Duisburg90 against bochum and the 120 against him Mainz 05. The load will increase in the final sprint before Newcastle (July 30), mirandés (31), Real society (August 5) and Alaves (6) and the coach will divide the group into two blocks given the compression of appointments.

All except the wounded Unai Simon had their chance to Germany. The Athletic He closed the stage undefeated, with a record of three draws and one victory. Although it could have been better, since the triumph in Mainz he fled over the horn. Beyond the feelings of each other, what is certain is that Valverde It served him a lot to test and lay the foundations for what the new rojiblanco route will be.


One of the unknowns that had to be resolved during the first meetings of the new Athletic was how I was going to handle the pieces Valverde after the almost motionless 4-4-2 stage of Marcelino. The skeleton base you showed Chingurri in Germany It’s his classic 4-2-3-1, which can turn into 4-3-3 or 4-1-4-1 depending on the profiles used in midfield and in attack.

These are the nuances that will tell how much the Bilbao team intends to be offensive. From Marcos already ventured before heading to Germany that he had the feeling that he was going to see a team that was a little more attacking than at the previous stage of Valverde. The Athletic He tried to take the initiative with the ball in all his movements and dominated more than he was dominated. join Munian there Sancet inside in front of him bochumeven if it was 45 minutes, it can be significant.

Vesga he seems to lead the way to occupy the anchor position by holding the center of the field. It has always been surrounded by the most titled block of German lands. Will the technician try to repeat the role that corresponded to The source in the 2013-14 campaign?

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If the commitments of the Athletic So far, this is due to the variety of positions encouraged by his trainer. Valverde has carried out multiple tests in all the plots of the green, working on all possible scenarios to leave nothing to chance during the course.

Perhaps the most surprising thing was seeing Danny Garcia central for half an hour against the Mainz. That of Viandar de la Vera has joined its two main “players” inside: Munian there Sancet. The question is whether this will continue. also tried with Villalibre there Guruseta at the same time at the meeting on Saturday, with the sole signature of Ibaigane ‘middle’ from behind.

Berenguer He acted on both wings of the attack. nolaskoian He worked as a central defender and as a central midfielder, but he lasted for a few minutes due to the blow suffered against the bochum. hock moved from the right wing against the Duisburg on the left side in Mainz. A Pecha It was seen on the right side of the stern and in the engine room. Valverde was also able to see in situ the evolution of Paredes, Luis Bilbao and Adu Ares. The future of the last two points to continue to grow in the subsidiary.


The goal is the great puzzle of recent years in the universe Athletic. The record of the first commitments of the summer is six goals in 300 minutes, an average of one goal every 50′. A priori it is not bad, however the data has a certain trick because three of them occurred in the last 10 minutes against the bochum. In the remaining 290′, they made three.

The rojiblancos showed their lack of punch in the friendly against Borussia MG and in the first half against bochum. The positive is that the cinema fan is open. The notches were the work of Nico Serrano, Raúl García, Villalibre (2), Williams and Nico Williams. All divided among the decoys. In the absence of someone gathering a large number of objectives, splitting among multiple rooms is presented as the best solution.

Nico Williams takes a picture during training in Germany

Borja Guerrero

Spearhead testing was above average. Williams, Raul, Guruzeta and Villalibre they played 45 minutes each against Borussia MG, Duisburg and Bochum. Power rotation. Valverde delimited the test in the Mewa Arena a Inaki and Gernikarra, with one hour per person.


What Inaki Williams is undisputed title is not something doubtful. The big question is where. On the right flank or in front? A question that was also asked Valverdewho tested it in both places in its process to put the puzzle pieces together.

The Bilbao man served like nine in the last years of his career. With Chingurri, instead, unpacked mostly from the side. It is true that lead was reserved for Aduriz. During the recent stage, williams He played more minutes at the top (45 with the Borussia MG and 60 with him Mainz 05) than on the right (45 with the bochum). Of course, his only goal came from the group.

There will be several factors that will come into play to solve the equation. Among them his brother Nicowhich monopolized a lot of protagonism in the offensives of the Athletic. He has almost always been a point of reference towards which his colleagues have tried to find him. Overflow seasoned with a beautifully crafted lens that he converted to reject focus. And all this without forgetting that, from what he showed Chingurrithe wings will have a relevant role in the search for depth.

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If for any reason the Athletic last year it was for being a very reliable block, for conceding little and for being one of the best defenses in the league. The last bet with the Mainz It is the one that the inhabitants of Bilbao have suffered the most. Remember that the Germans were one week away from their official debut and that those of Valverde They arrived somewhat laden with the friendly match played with the bochum 48 hours before.

If we look at the three goals scored by the Athletic In his German career, there is a common denominator. All came with the theoretical plan B on the green. Until there marked for him Duisburg in the face of passivity square as a left-back in a rearguard that also formed Petxa, Nolaskoain and Paredes.

The bochum marked in an action initiated after a loss of Ability in the opposite field. The rest of the defense consisted of Vivian, Paredes and Lekue. The Mainz paired on the buzzer in the last “gig” with a defense consisting of Leku, Yeray, Dani Garcia and Balenziaga. The sides may be the weakest point. Especially the left flank suffers from physical problems. First of all in Valencia and now with the sprained ankle of Yuri.

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