Gaizka Garitano “It’s Important That We Score Goals”
Athletic got the preseason off to a strong start on Saturday by beating Arenas 6-1 in the first friendly of the summer. Manager Gaizka Garitano addressed the media after the match at Fadura and explained that the final score wasn’t really important to him. Instead, he was happy to see the team perform well and to leave without anyone picking up an injury.
“I don’t give much importance to the result, but to the volume of work and that no one was injured. The result doesn’t matter so much. I’m happy because nobody has been injured which is the objective of every coach. There is a very high workload during the week with morning and afternoon training session so there is always a risk that someone will fall on Saturday. That didn’t happen and everyone finished well. My number one goal was to not have any injuries.”
Garitano went on to share that the players have been eagerly looking forward to the friendly just to get back on the field again. The Mister also praised Aritz Aduriz, Iñaki Williams, and Raúl García who all found the back of the net and are looking strong this summer.
“The players wanted to feel the sensation of a match. Their legs aren’t there yet and they are tired from a heavy workload, but the important thing is that they felt the field again. This was part of the process to get ready for the first league match. You know the top players live by scoring goals, even against an opponent in the Segunda B. When you score goals it builds confidence and you see the goal a litter bigger. It’s important that we score goals because we’ve had difficulties scoring and finishing plays.”
In closing, Garitano was asked about the young players who performed well on Saturday. “Everyone has shown good things and also other things to improve”, he answered. “This is everyone’s opportunity to earn a place in the team. We have many young players and I’m sure that someone will stand out. They have to continue improving so that they will be good in the Primera. It will be good for Oihan to have an entire preseason. He had a very serious injury and he needs a preseason, for us and for his future. He’s a player that has a lot of potential. “The Lions will travel to Germany on Sunday where they will train for a week and play friendlies against Paderborn and Borussia Monchengladbach.