Iñigo Martinez “Our Goal Is To Win The Cup And Ride La Gabarra Without Brakes All The Way To La Concha”
Athletic’s struggles in La Liga have been cushioned by the team’s impressive run to the Copa del Rey semifinal. Following last week’s 1-0 win over Granada in the first leg at San Mamés, the Basques have one foot in the final and will travel to Andalusia on 5 March to settle the tie. Winning the title would be the club’s first major trophy since 1984 and the players are excited about the possibility of ending the drought.
On Monday, Iker Muniain and Iñigo Martinez attended the DEIA Sports Gala where both took a moment to discuss the Cup run while accepting awards. For the captain, reaching the final would be special but the team can’t afford to look past the semifinal second leg.
“A very thrilling and exciting month lies ahead,” said Muniain. “First we play Alavés, then Villarreal, and then that Cup semifinal that has everyone so anxious. Hopefully it will be resolved with a happy outcome. Hopefully we can play the final and fight for another title that allows us to make this club bigger.”
Martinez was a bit more straightforward with his comments. While the team is still committed to taking the season one game at a time, there’s no doubting that Athletic are serious about their pursuit of the Copa del Rey title.
“As the Mister says, we have to go game by game and match by match. What really matter now is La Liga and the next game. We aren’t getting good results although it’s true that our goal is to reach the Cup final, win it, and ride La Gabarra without brakes all the way to La Concha.”
Saying that he wants to ride La Gabarra to La Concha, a famous beach in Donosti, brought immediate criticism. Many Real Sociedad fans took Martinez’s statement as a jab at his former club, but the defender has since taken to social media to apologize, saying that he didn’t intend to offend anyone.
“My words have been completely taken out of context. It was an inopportune joke. People who know me know that I respect and keep a lot of love for Donosti, La Concha, and all its people. I didn’t mean to disrespect anyone.”
Athletic and Real Sociedad are favorites to win their semifinal ties and meet in the Cup final at La Cartuja. The rivals have never faced off in the final and doing so this season would be historic and massive for Basque football.
Mis palabras se han sacado totalmente de contexto. Ha sido una broma inoportuna. La gente que me conoce sabe que respeto y guardo mucho cariño de Donosti, La Concha y toda su gente. No he querido faltar al respeto a nadie.
— Iñigo Martinez (@InigoMartinez) February 18, 2020