When Cuco Ziganda officially took over as the Athletic Club manager earlier this month he made it very clear that he wanted to see everyone in action before making any decisions about the squad. With thirty players available it is clear that some will have to leave. True to his word, Ziganda did not lighten his team before beginning preseason training and has given everyone at least 45 minutes over the first two friendly matches this week. That being said, one player is closer than ever to making his exit.
According to a report from Javier Martin of AS, Leganes is hoping to finalize a deal to sign Javi Eraso and would like to complete the signing sometime this week. The 27-year-old spent two years at Leganes before returning to Athletic back in 2015 and is said to be desiring a move back to the club.
The report says that the deal will likely be identical to the one that saw Unai Bustinza leave the San Mames to join Leganes last season. Eraso would essentially be allowed to leave for free to become a Leganes player, but Athletic would retain a buy-back clause that would be valid for one year. The midfielder also had offers from Eibar and Alaves but has decided that the best decision is to return to Leganes where he knows the club and can play a major role in the team.
Ziganda had planned to offload Eraso this summer, but wanted to give him the chance to prove himself first. Those close to the situation claim that the midfielder was hoping to join Leganes before preseason training began, but that did not happen. Athletic informed Leganes that they would be taking the first two weeks of training to evaluate Eraso before making a decision and that time period has officially ended. The Lions will be returning to Bilbao on 18 July and reports claim that the Lezama product could be on his way to Leganes not long after Athletic Club returns home.