Yeray Suffers Shoulder Injury In Win Over West Ham
Saturday’s match against West Ham at London Stadium was a big test for Gaizka Garitano’s Lions. Athletic entered the game having not lost a single friendly all summer, but the English side would be the strongest opponents so far during the preseason. Quick goals from Unai López and Iñaki Williams saw the Basques take an early 2-0 lead but West Ham would draw level by the 22nd minute in what was an intense match.
The defensive partnership of Yeray and Unai Nuñez looked strong. Both center-backs made several big tackles, were great in the air, and forced West Ham to attack mainly down the wings. With the La Liga season kicking off in just two weeks it was encouraging to see a solid performance from the Lions, but one player did pick up a worrying injury.
In the dying minutes of the match Yeray made a sliding challenge to win the ball back during a West Ham counter. However, the defender stayed on the ground in clear pain. Nuñez and Unai Simón quickly motioned for the medical staff to come out and it took a while before the 24-year-old was helped up and walked off the field. Yeray could be seen holding his left shoulder the entire time and grimacing.
Replay showed that Yeray anchored his sliding challenge with his left arm but nothing stood out to suggest an injury. After the game the defender didn’t show any real signs of pain and wasn’t wearing any medical equipment to brace his shoulder He even went to celebrate with the fans at the stadium and gave his shirt away, though he barely moved his left arm.
Athletic have yet to release a medical report, but the hope is that Yeray hasn’t suffered any serious injury. Tests will be conducted to determine the extent of the issue. Depending on the diagnosis, Gaizka Garitano will likely be cautious with the defender for the remainder of the preseason. If he is unavailable for the season opener against Barcelona then Unai Nuñez will be the one to start in his place at San Mamés.