Rafa Alkorta “I Will Not Disappoint You”
Athletic Club’s Presidential election was always going to be a tight race. Alberto Uribe-Echevarría was a figure of stability while Aitor Elizegi was the face of change. In the end Socios voted for change which also means that former defender Rafael Alkorta will become the club’s new Sporting Director. In an interview on Friday he admitted that the victory was difficult and that he is ready to start working.
“Something very complicated happened yesterday, but we have taken it forward. I’ve wanted to do this for a long time. I’ve been playing football since I was 12 years old. I’m ready. I’m excited and ready to start working. We live faithful to our philosophy, but we have to try to adapt to the moment that we are in and do a very professional job to be the best again. I have to try to get Athletic, when directing a player, to know what is going on at Lezama. We won’t make any changes until the end of the season because everyone is still under contract, but we will take this time to analyze and see what decisions need to be made.”
When asked about potential targets Alkorta admitted that Ander Herrera, Fernando Llorente, and Ibai Gómez are the players that everyone is talking about. The first thing, however, is to figure out exactly what the club needs.
“We have a very small market. Ander Herrera is Athletic and he’s a player who can come back, but he’s with Manchester United and it’s difficult. We have to be interested. Fernando Llorente has been more explicit. He would like to come back, but he has a contract until June. We must first talk about the needs of the team. Ibai Gómez has a contract with Alavés. We can’t do anything.”
Alkorta took to Twitter on Friday to voice just what it means to become Athletic’s Sporting Director. “This has been my life since I started with Athletic at the age of 12”, he said. “Football, respecting everyone, my parents instilled it in me. To those who doubt my experience in this position, I will try to be up to par. I will not disappoint you.” Rafa Alkorta has been putting together a plan for Lezama for several years now and is ready to put it into action.