Inigo Cordoba And Unai Lopez Could Return To The Starting Lineup Against Real Sociedad

Inigo Cordoba Paderborn

Iñigo Córdoba could make his season debut against Real Sociedad (EC)

Friday’s Basque Derby against Real Sociedad will be one of Athletic’s biggest matches of the season. Both teams will come into the game with four points and it will be up to Gaizka Garitano to get the lineup and tactics right in order to secure an important victory at home. The team likely won’t change much from the opening two fixtures, but there could be some adjustments.

Unai Lopez started in Athletic’s win over Barcelona but was back on the bench for the draw against Getafe. Garitano explained that Benat offered the team an important weapon in set pieces which was the key factor in the decision. However, Lopez could return to the lineup on Friday night. The midfielder has spent the last two days of training working alongside Dani Garcia suggesting they will partner once again.

Likewise, Inigo Cordoba has also been working with the starters at Lezama. The 22-year-old seemed to be Garitano’s choice at left-wing before suffering a knee injury at the end of preseason and was recently cleared to play again. Cordoba and Muniain have spent the bulk of training this week operating as the two wingers and could do so against Real Sociedad.

The big question is whether or not Iñigo Martinez will start against his former club. The defender missed the opening match with a muscle problem but recovered in time to make the bench against Getafe. Unai Nuñez has been exceptional so far this year though Yeray did make a costly error at Coliseum Alfonso Pérez. Martinez is ready to play but that doesn’t mean he will be thrust back into the lineup.

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