Joseba Etxeberria Praises Bilbao Athletic’s Historic Win Over Real Unión
Bilbao Athletic finally put an end to their 15 year winless streak at Stadium Gal on Saturday. The Kumeak put in what was arguably their best performance on the road this season as they defeated Real Unión 1-0, but it wasn’t an easy victory. After the game, Joseba Etxeberria praised his team’s ability to deal with a late onslaught of attacks and keep a clean sheet in a difficult stadium.
“We had to suffer in the final minutes with many of their players forward”, the Mister began. “They pushed us back. We had opportunities to score and make it 2-0 to finish the game, but we must know how to suffer in these types of games. We saw the statistics that Bilbao Athletic had gone many years without winning here and today we put the score back to zero again.”
The Kumeak had multiple chances towards the end of the game to score a second goal and secure victory. Etxeberria lamented the missed chances but was still excited about the win regardless of the difficulties.
“We are happy to win. You have to know how to play games like these. We have to finish goal chances to kill the game. When you don’t you can suffer. Ending this game without a conceding s goal isn’t easy. Real Unión have good players and this victory has great merit.”
Jokin Ezkieta made several big saves in the second half to keep Real Unión from equalizing. “Jokin transmits a lot of security and he’s good with his feet”, said Etxeberria when asked about the tremendous performance. “He’s a goalkeeper who is brave and takes many cross which helps us in the air. His saves allowed us to win. Having a goalkeeper with so many guarantees gives you security.”
Ewan Urain also played a big role in the victory, scoring the winning goal in his first start for Bilbao Athletic. Etxeberria believes that the 19-year-old could have a bright future ahead, but made it clear that patience is the most important thing at this point in the striker’s development.
“Urain has been waiting for a long time because of his knee injury. We gave him chances in training, then a few minutes, and today he has played a very complete game. He held up play well and was dangerous with the ball. He’s an interesting player for the future, although we have to be patient. He has good potential and quality.”
Bilbao Athletic will be back in action this weekend when they host Real Valladolid Promesas at Lezama. “We will try to play our game”, Etxeberria said about the important fixture. “They are one of the best teams in the group because they have experienced players. It will be a complicated game. They play fast in transition and are good from set-pieces. We will have to be at our best to get a result.” The Kumeak have quickly become one of the favorites to qualify for promotion and will have the opportunity to build on their lead at the top of the table in the matches ahead.