Mikel Balenziaga Misses Training Again, Mikel San José And Ibai Gómez Could Start Against Atlético

Ibai Gomez

Ibai Gómez played a major role in last week’s draw with Espanyol (AC)

Mikel Balenziaga is in danger of missing Saturday’s match against Atlético Madrid. After leaving training early yesterday due to an undisclosed issue the defender missed all of Wednesday session as well. Athletic have yet to give any form of medical update on the 30-year-old but his available is certainly in question at this point. On another note, Gorka Guruzeta and Peru Nolaskoain were back training with the first team after spending last weekend with Bilbao Athletic.

Being without the left-back could potentially put Athletic in a dangerous situation. Gaizka Garitano will already be without Ander Capa who is recovering from a strained hamstring. This would mean that Oscar De Marcos and Yuri Berchiche would be the only fullbacks available to the manager unless he chooses to call up Iñigo Lekue for the first time this season.

Garitano will have a few other big decisions to make regarding the lineup as well. Iñigo Martinez is suspended for the game and Unai Nuñez will be taking his place beside Yeray. That appears to be the simple change to make, but it isn’t the only one. There are also questions as to who will start in the midfield and on the right wing.

Mikel San José started last week’s match against Espanyol in place of Beñat and could do so again on Saturday, sources claim. The midfielder has impressed under Garitano and his strength in the center of the pitch could play a big role in toppling Atlético. Meanwhile, there is a belief that Ibai Gómez has cemented his place in the team after his vital assist last week. The 29-year-old could start over Markel Susaeta at San Mamés for the first time since returning to Athletic.

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