Xabi Etxeita Will Reportedly Leave Athletic And Sign A Two-Year Contract With Huesca
After playing for Athletic Club for seven years Xabi Etxeita’s time at the San Mamés is coming to an end. Going into the summer there were already questions about his future with the team and new manager Eduardo Berizzo has now made a final decision. The 30-year-old has been left out of the squad for Athletic’s first two preseason friendlies and is expected to leave the club in the coming days.
Following Athletic’s 5-0 win over Barakaldo on Sunday the manager was asked about the absence of Xabi Etxeita. He was open and honest about the fact that the defender will be leaving the club. “Etxeita has the option to leave, as a precaution we thought it was best for him to not participate. It was better to protect him so that his option is clear. Xabi deserves to have minutes and if he isn’t going to have them with us, then professionalism obliges me to give him the opportunity elsewhere.”
The defender has been linked with a move to newly promoted Huesca for a few weeks now and it finally appears as though a deal is close to being finalized. Nika Cuenca of Fiebre Rojiblanca has reported that Etxeita will sign a two-year deal with Huesca and will likely see his contract with Athletic mutually terminated. He has been left out of the squad for their trip to Holland ahead of his move.
With Etxeita on the way out his place in the team is up for grabs with Andoni López and Peru Nolaskoain competing for the job. Both have been converted to center-backs this summer by Eduardo Berizzo and have played in the position exclusively during the club’s two friendlies. The next few weeks will be vitally important as they battle for a place in the team with Iñigo Martinez still out nursing a calf injury.