Dani García: The Ideas Of The Coach Are Attractive And Exciting
Dani García has been one of the most exciting additions to Athletic Club this summer after leaving Eibar on a free transfer. The midfielder has shown the ability to perform at a high level in Eduardo Berizzo’s system and was able to speak to the media following Thursday’s training session. As expected, he was immediately asked about the departure of Kepa Arrizabalaga but made it clear that he has total faith in the other goalkeepers in the squad.
“We all know he is an important player, but when I arrived I was surprised by how good all of the goalkeepers were. Those who are here, Iago and Alex, and those who are now, Simón and Oleaga, can play at a high level and we have to be calm about that. Now is the chance for Iago and Alex to take the goal. It is an important loss, but there are great goalkeepers at Athletic.”
García went on to say that Kepa’s choice to leave was personal and that he doesn’t owe an explanation, as the midfielder didn’t give any reason for his own exit from Eibar. With the transfer finalized Athletic now have €80 million to spend, but García explained that he is in no place to suggest what the club should do with the money.
“I wish Kepa the best. These are personal decisions. Kepa said goodbye to us. He’s a great person and he doesn’t have to give an explanation. I didn’t give an explanation when I left Eibar. Using the money to buy new players? Man…this squad is very good and if we all give 100% we can have a great year. It isn’t my job to say that any player should come or leave. We are the ones who are here and we will give 100%.”
Turning attention to himself, Dani García admitted that he is very happy with like at Athletic. He expected everything to be good, but says that it is even better than he expected. Although he isn’t placing any personal goals on himself this year, the team is hoping to challenge for European qualification.
“I’m delighted to be here. I am very happy, even better than expected. I knew the team would be good, but the whole team is better than I expected. The locker room is great and everybody tries to help each other. The system, the ideas of the coach, are attractive and exciting. Goals? I’ve never set personal goals. I come to training every morning to earn my job. I don’t see myself as a starter or as the former Eibar captain. There is a lot of competition. The objective this year is for the team to perform well and to fight to be in Europe.”
In closing, the midfielder discussed new Athletic manager Eduardo Berizzo. He highlighted Toto’s demand for intensity, saying that it took some time to adjust, but things are going great now. García is expected big things from Athletic Club this season if everyone performs well.
“We have a very demanding coach that requires us to be moving for 90 minutes with the ball and without the ball. He will push us to our limits. You see it in training and with the pace we have to play. At first I had trouble recovering my legs after previous years of being accustomed to another way of playing, but now I am fine. The goal is to do what the Mister asks. The risks we take by having to run so much will benefit us in the end I think. If we play our best we can have a great year.”
With Kepa gone there is now a chance for Iago Herrerín and Alex Remiro to battle for the starting goalkeeper spot. Unfortunately, Herrerín suffered a muscle injury during Thursday’s training session and will be undergoing tests to determine the extent. This will give Remiro the chance to prove himself as he could become the goalkeeper of the present and future now that he is now longer in Kepa’s shadow.