Iñaki Williams spent a large portion of the summer competing with Spain’s U21 side which saw him return to Athletic Club training later than his teammates. Because of this he was forced to miss the first match of the Europa League qualifier against Dinamo Bucuresti, but he will be in the squad for Thursday’s return leg at the San Mamés. On Tuesday night the forward spoke with Alvaro Fernandez Cadierno on Radio Euskadi and said that he is excited to get back to playing football.
“Physically I am getting back to where I need to be. I’m doing well and ready to start playing. I face the new season with great enthusiasm and I’m hoping to improve a lot. I understand things well with Kuko. When I was at Bilbao Athletic he helped me a lot. I owe a lot to Ernesto for giving me my debut and I hope he does well. We want to go as far as we can in the Europa League. We can’t start to assume things before facing Dinamo, but we are excited. We are superior to Dinamo but we have to prove that on the field.”
There have been a lot of rumors surrounding the 23-year-old with clubs such as Juventus and Liverpool linked with moves. However, Iñaki once again reiterated his desire to stay at Athletic Club and noted that Aritz Aduriz is his reference point.
“I’m focused on Athletic and I am happy here. Athletic is my home. I don’t pay attention to any of the rumors. Hopefully I can be here for many years. I feel the most at home as the number 9, but Aduriz is our reference and I hope to continue learning from him. He makes me a better player.”
Athletic drew 1-1 in the first meeting with Dinamo meaning they earned a vital away goal. They will still need a solid performance on Thursday if they are going to advance to the next stage. Luckily, the Lions have been extremely difficult to beat at the San Mamés over the last few years and fans are hoping that the incredible form will continue. Having Iñaki Williams back in the team will add another dimension to the attack and could prove to be a difference maker against the Romanians.