Eduardo Berizzo “The Key To The Game Is Playing Our Way”
The international break is finally over and Athletic will be back in action on Sunday when they travel to Ipurua to take on Eibar. Following training on Saturday, Eduardo Berizzo gave his pregame press conference and began by announcing that midfielder Beñat has been released from the hospital. The 31-year-old is now resting at home and Unai López could take his spot in the starting lineup tomorrow.
“Beñat has been released from the hospital and is resting at home. We are happy for him because he had a fright. We hope to see him back at Lezama soon. The club’s medical team have done a great job. He will not be able to play this weekend so we must find someone who can help us play our style of football faithfully. The midfield is fundamental. It may be Unai’s [López] moment.”
Berizzo is well aware of the fact that Eibar will play very direct football. To counter, the manager wants his players to have intensity and impose their style on their hosts. He believes that if the Lions can use their system properly they will be able to leave Ipurua with all three points.
“Ipurua is a field where they will have the advantage. Eibar play a lot of direct football and we have to respond with intensity and imposing our system. We have to move the ball with intentionality. The key to the game is playing our way. We want to have possession, pass the ball, and try to impose ourselves. Tomorrow we have to go into the game with a lot of intensity and concentration if we want it to go our way.”
To close, Berizzo admitted that he believes Athletic have played good football this year, but have been held back by there mistakes. He took responsibility for leading the team to scoring more goals and being effective. The return of Aritz Aduriz will help that, however the most important thing is protecting the ball every game.
“Going on a break after losing puts a bad taste in your mouth. I think we have played good football, but we have to be the first ones to recognize our mistakes and address them. In these next few games we have to be more solid and protect the ball better. There is something special about this team’s ability to train. It’s amazing and now we’ve made some adjustments over the break. It’s the coach’s job to make a system that creates more chances and is effective. The presence of Aritz makes that easier. I choose the players that I think will offer more, but everyone must be ready.”
This week presents Athletic with a wonderful opportunity to start climbing the La Liga table. After playing Eibar on Sunday the Lions will travel to take on Rayo Vallecano on Wednesday which is a match that was rescheduled from late September. The game in hand could prove to be a massive boost for the team, but right now their focus has to be on the Basque Derby at Ipurua.