Aitor Elizegi “It Was An Unforgettable Night”

Aitor Elizegi Barcelona

Aitor Elizegi with Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu before last night’s match (AC)

Athletic president Aitor Elizegi was among the San Mamés record 49,154 fans in attendance for last night’s incredible 1-0 win over Barcelona. There was no fear from the Lions who played a magnificent match to book their place in the Copa del Rey semifinals. Like many others, Elizegi was at a loss for words following the victory and believes the team has what it takes to challenge for the title.

“It was an unforgettable night,” the president told El Correo on Friday morning. “It was a night for this club to remember and for the Athletic fans, for the Zurigorri family that always support the team away from home and at San Mamés in these big games. We have eliminated a team, Barcelona, who have played in the last six finals and put all their resources on the pitch.”

Following the victory at the Cathedral, Athletic have now been drawn against Granada for the semifinals which will be played over two legs. The Basques believe they can make it to the final, but must first prepare for Sunday’s Basque Derby against Real Sociedad.

“We still have a way to go in the tournament. We’ve made it here because we are a team that never stops giving effort and has the same level of commitment on the grass as the fans have in the stands. The most important thing now is to focus on La Liga because a serious of Derbies are coming. There’s no time to enjoy this when we have an exciting visit to Real in a few days.”

Winning Sunday’s Derby at Anoeta could lift Athletic as high as 7th in the La Liga table and give the Lions a tiebreaker against La Real as well. Athletic will then play two more Basque Derbies, against Osasuna and Alavés, in the league while also attempted to eliminate Granada from the Cup and book their place in the final.

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