Celta Vigo 1-2 Athletic Club: Postgame Player Ratings
Athletic Club secured three big points in Monday night’s 2-1 win over Celta Vigo which also happened to be the team’s first victory on the road this season. The Lions are now out of the relegation zone but it took a group effort to leave Balaídos with a win. Iñaki Williams put in a man-of-the-match performance while several other teammates contributed in an impressive way as well.
Iago Herrerín 7/10
Athletic were not able to keep a clean sheet but that wasn’t because of Iago Herrerín. Celta Vigo’s only goal was a flicked on header from a corner and there was nothing the keeper could have done to stop it. Everything else Herrerín did was solid. He claimed 2 crosses, made 2 saves, and assisted the winning goal with a spectacular long ball to Iñaki Williams.
Ander Capa 6/10
It was a quietly efficient night from Ander Capa who was rarely seen, but did his job well. With two tackles, two clearances, and an interception he was rarely out of position. The right-back also drew one foul which led to a dangerous free kick in the first half. An above average performance from Capa who did what was asked of him.
Unai Nuñez 7/10
Unai Nuñez took advantage of his opportunity with Yeray suspended for this match. The 21-year-old was a wall at the back making 4 blocks, 5 clearances, and winning 4 balls in the air. He also had two great headers on offense, one of which should have been a goal if not for a miraculous save, which raises his score even more.
Iñigo Martinez 7/10
In what was perhaps Iñigo Martinez’s most complete game of the season the center-back didn’t give Celta anything easy. He finished the game with 5 clearances, 3 interceptions, one block, and won 4 headers on defense while also completing 4 long balls and proving a key pass further up the field. The stats don’t even tell the whole story as he read the game well and stopped a few dangerous attacks with perfect positioning. A great performance from the 27-year-old.
Yuri Berchiche 6/10
Yuri Berchiche had one of the highest passing percentages of anyone on the team, completing 78%. He was also a menace down the left wing combining play with Iñigo Córdoba. He won 3 dribbles and put in 4 successful crosses in attack while still clearing the ball 5 times on defense, several of which were dangerous, and winning 4 headers. He did lose the ball twice and was out of position a few times which lowers his overall score.
Dani García 5/10
As is usually the case, Dani García led the team in passing by completing 85% of his passes. He also made things difficult for Celta in the midfield with 3 tackles, 2 headers, and one clearance near the box. García continues to affect games with his vision and positioning, but it was far from perfect on Monday night. The 28-year-old was late to a few challenges and committed three fouls, one of which was lucky not to be shown a straight red card.
Beñat seems to be finding more of a rhythm in Garitano’s system. The midfielder finished the game completing 3 crosses, one dribble, and 4/8 long balls, but it was his defensive contribution that stood out. Beñat led the team with 5 tackles, while also making an interception and winning 2 headers. He did commit three fouls and lost the ball once, but overall it was a good game in midfield.
Oscar De Marcos 5/10
It was quite a surprise to see Oscar De Marcos starting on the right wing. He had played in the position before, but it’s been a long time since and he hadn’t trained on the wing all season. Regardless, he had a solid night of mostly contributing for his teammates with 2 crosses and drawing a foul to retain possession. De Marcos’s most effective contributions came without the ball as his positioning and pressure made it difficult for Celta, however, he did give the lost the ball 3 times.
Iker Muniain 7/10
Once again Iker Muniain was fabulous in a midfield role. He completed 82% of his passes, won 2 dribbles, and scored the opening goal in the 19th minute of the game. Celta found it hard to mark him as they fouled Muniain 4 times and he was allowed the freedom to create and move the ball around effectively without much of a challenge.
Iñigo Córdoba 5/10
Gaizka Garitano continues to trust Iñigo Córdoba in the starting lineup and the 21-year-old keeps delivering. With 4 crosses, 2 dribbles, 2 interceptions, and one shot it was another impressive night for the winger. Córdoba would have a higher score, but he lost the ball 5 times which is a part of his game that he must improve.
Iñaki Williams 9/10
Iñaki Williams had his way with a Celta Vigo defense that couldn’t account for his speed and pace in the open field. He provided the assist to Iker Muniain in the first half and scored the winner in the 54th minute. The 24-year-old also won one dribble and had two more chances in the box that he wasn’t able to finish. If not for losing possession 5 times and missing on another chance in front of goal his score would have been even higher.
Aritz Aduriz 6/10
Substitutes often don’t have enough time on the field to make an impact, but Aritz Aduriz did. He came on for Williams in the 66th minute and the offense continued to wreak havoc. Aduriz had a beautiful strike saved and won 3 headers. He also drew a foul and didn’t lose the ball on a single one of his 18 touches.
Mikel San José 5/10
Mikel San José only played 15 minutes but he completed 89% of his passes, gave a key pass, and won a header. It wasn’t much, but he did everything asked of him after coming on for Dani García.
Mikel Balenziaga 5/10
Mikel Balenziaga came on for Córdoba in the 88th minute but had the chance to play all the way through the 6 added minutes. He completed every pass, won a header, and had a key interception. He wasn’t on the field long enough to do anything significant, but was trustworthy in his limited minutes.