The season has long ended for Athletic and the Lions have already been busy making decisions about the first team squad. Gorka Iraizoz will leave the club, as will Gorka Elustondo. Enric Saborit is the only other player who will see his contract end this month, but it looks like he won’t be making an exit.
According to a report from Juanma Velasco of Marca, Cuco Ziganda has decided to exercise the option in Saborit’s contract to extend his deal for another season. Additionally, Athletic is also said to be working on a two-year extension for the Lezama product.
This move will come as a shock to many fans who expected Saborit to be making his exit this summer. The 25-year-old has played a very limited role and has been criticized for weak performances in big games. Still, Ziganda is believed to want Saborit in the squad to provide depth due to his ability to play anywhere along the left wing as well center-back if needed.
It should be noted that the report does mention that Saborit will not be needed if the club can sign someone like Nacho Monreal. Extending Saborit’s deal is being seen as more of a precautionary move in case the club isn’t able to strengthen the left-back position this summer. Saborit’s contract will expire at the end of this month so Athletic Club should make an official announcement about his future fairly soon. If the Lions do make a signing, Saborit will likely be sold or sent somewhere on loan.