Bilbao Athletic 3-0 Gernika: Katxorros Still Unstoppable At Lezama

Asier Villalibre Inigo Vicente Bilbao Athletic Celebrate

Bilbao Athletic celebrate a goal against Gernika (AC)

It’s been almost 400 days since Bilbao Athletic last lost a game at home. The Katxorros has been dominant for over a year now and have started the new season in terrific form as well. Gaizka Garitano’s side is unbeaten through the first four games and looked to keep that streak alive on Saturday when they welcomed visitors Gernika Club to Lezama for what promised to be a difficult match.

From the opening whistle both sides went on the attack which saw plenty of open play. However, as time passed Bilbao Athletic were able to settle into a rhythm and force Gernika to defend deep in their own area. The first chance of the game came through a corner kick that saw Gorka Pérez’s header saved. The ball fell to Jon Rojo who blasted a shot at goal that was cleared.

Minutes later Asier Villalibre settled a ball on his chest and volleyed a shot from just outside the box. It was a fantastic strike which saw Gernika’s keeper make a diving save.  The Katxorros would get a third chance in the 35th minute when Gaizka Larrazabal played Jon Sillero in behind the defense. Sillero put a low cross across the face of the goal but Iñigo Vicente wasn’t able to put a foot on the ball which skipped out.

Bilbao Athletic were knocking on the door and would finally break the deadlock just before halftime. Vicente was able to take on two opponents before lifting a pass over the heads of the defense to the back post. Sillero ran onto the ball and volleyed from close range to give the Katxorros the deserved 1-0 lead. Gaizka Garitano’s team was in complete control but they would need to finish it off in the second half.

Jon Sillero Rojo Munoz Bilbao Athletic Celebrate

Iñigo Baqué came on for Peru Nolaskoain after the break but the team did not skip a beat. They continued to attack in waves and Gernika were forced to look for chances on the counter. Three times they were able to create danger down their left wing, but Sillero and Dani Vivian did well to stop the momentum. Still, Unai Etxebarria was called on to claim a few crosses and save a weak header.

In the 66th minute Bilbao Athletic were awarded a free kick from well outside the box. The cross was sent in and cleared but Iñigo Muñoz headed it right back into the box to Dani Vivian. The defender settled the ball with only the keeper to beat and tucked a shot into the corner to double the lead. The Katxorros had a secure lead but were still looking for more as the game progressed.

Just for good measure Bilbao Athletic would add a third and final goal in the 78th minute courtesy of Vicente. The forward picked up a loose ball outside the box and quickly dribbled between two defenders. He then beautifully chipped the keeper to make it 3-0 which sealed the victory at Lezama. The win saw the team continue their unbeaten streak to start the season and keep their place at the top of the table with 13 points from 5 matches.

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