Eduardo Berizzo Reportedly Interested In Signing Former Lezama Standout Iñigo Ruiz De Galarreta
Even though Eduardo Berizzo has only been the Athletic Club manager for roughly 48 hours, he has been preparing for the job for the last two months. The Argentine has watched every game played by the first team and Bilbao Athletic, and has even been keeping an eye out for potential transfer targets. Up until this point the Basques have been linked with moves for Mikel Merino, Ander Herrera, Yuri Berchiche, and Kike Barja, but Berizzo has reportedly also shown interest in a familiar face.
According to reporter César Méndez, Berizzo is interested in possibly signing former Lezama standout, Iñigo Ruiz de Galarreta, who is currently playing for Barcelona B and will likely be allowed to leave the team this summer. The 24-year-old scored one goal and provided two assists this season while being the catalyst for the Blaugrana. His vision, passing, and ability to dictate play in the middle of the field continue to impress and it is no secret that Primera clubs have been watching him closely.
Athletic fans will remember Galarreta fondly as a young star whose career was negatively impacted by two major knee injuries. While at Lezama he looked like the next big thing coming to the San Mamés, but was never able to find a permanent place in the first team, although he did make his debut under Berizzo’s mentor, Marcelo Bielsa. He spent time with Mirandés, Zaragoza, and Leganés before eventually ending up at Numancia. While there, he finally put the injuries behind him and began to live up to his potential. Now that Barcelona B have been relegated, Galarreta is expected to leave and the club will not stand in his way.
The Basques aren’t the only ones watching Galarreta, with Deportivo La Coruña said to be pushing very hard for his transfer. The 24-year-old still has two years left on his contract with Barcelona and is expected to meet with the Catalans soon to discuss his future and weigh up his options. Mikel Merino remains the top transfer target for Athletic Club, but interest in Galarreta is certainly justified at this point and a special story to follow over the next few months. Now that he is finally starting to live up to his potential, a return to Athletic Club isn’t out of the question.