Urtzi Iriondo still dreams of one day being a first team player for Athletic Club. The left-back joined Lezama when he was just 10 years old and has always been one of the best players on his team. Last year it became clear that he needed to leave Bilbao Athletic to continue developing against stronger opponents. He joined Elche on loan in the Segunda and went on to feature in 21 matches.
The loan at Elche was not easy. The 22-year-old spent the first part of the season rarely seeing the field before securing a starting role near the end of the campaign. He hoped that it would be enough to earn a place in the first team under Cuco Ziganda, but the club believes that the best thing for his development is to continue in the Segunda.
On Friday Athletic Club announced that Urtzi Iriondo had been loaned to Granada for the 2017-2018 season. Granada was relegated from the Primera last season and are hoping for a quick return.
As of now Iriondo’s role at Granada is unknown. Athletic have certainly been looking for a loan partner that could guarantee Iriondo regular minutes, but that remains to be seen. The left-back has proven that he can play in the Segunda so this second loan spell will be the perfect chance to make his case for the first team. The future of the position behind Mikel Balenziaga is a big question. Iriondo may very well be competing with Andoni Lopez of Bilbao Athletic for a future role at the San Mames.