Joseba Etxeberria Must Find Solutions As Injuries Continue To Plague Bilbao Athletic
Injuries continue to be the one thing holding Bilbao Athletic back from greatness. Since the start of the season the Kumeak have been arguably the best team in the Segunda B but constant injuries have plagued Joseba Etxeberria’s side from the beginning. The team has been without a true striker for the majority of the campaign and will be without as many as five starters this weekend against Izarra.
The issues with Andoni Tascón and Ewan Urain are well documented at this point. Both strikers have been dealing with muscle injuries throughout the season and just haven’t been able to stay healthy. Iñigo Baqué, a defensive midfielder, has taken their place in the attack which has yielded positive results, although opponents are starting to find ways to respond.
On Sunday Bilbao Athletic fell 2-0 to struggling to Guijuelo, the team’s second loss in three games. While Tascón and Urain were both unavailable, and will be so again this weekend, Etxeberria was also without Dani Vivian who continues to struggle with back pain that has seen him make just five appearances. Oihan Sancet was also unavailable, though his absence was due to the fact that he was making his first start in the Primera.
Before the hour mark against Guijuelo, Bilbao Athletic lost another key player as Jon Sillero felt discomfort and was forced to leave the field. The captain has since been diagnosed with a hamstring injury and will also miss Sunday’s game against Izarra. When Bilbao Athletic take the field at Lezama in just a few days they will do so without a striker, two key defenders, or Sancet who has been the team’s best player.
Once again it will be up to Etxeberria to find the answers as Bilbao Athletic hope to secure a big win and jump back to the top of the table. Luckily, Gorka Guruzeta has been made available following his return from ACL surgery and will play this weekend according to sources. The Kumeak currently trail Logróñes by just one point and the two sides are favorites to qualify for the promotional playoffs. Izarra will present another challenge for Bilbao Athletic though, to this point, the team has done well when faced with adversity.