Iago Herrerín “The Club Knows What I Think And What I Want”
Iago Herrerín has one foot out the door. Having grown increasingly frustrated with his lack of minutes and constant criticism from fans, the 32-year-old is unhappy with his situation at Athletic. The football stoppage has given Herrerín plenty of time to reflect and he’s not been shy about his desire to leave San Mamés this summer.
“It was hard not to play against Granada,” Herrerín told Radio Popular. “I was in a bad place because it was just one more weight on my shoulders, but it’s my day to day and every time it’s happened I have recovered. I will continue working and supporting my teammates.”
Although Herrerín has always dreamed of being the starting goalkeeper for Athletic, he isn’t seeing the field. Over the summer he had offers from other clubs but Athletic refused to let him leave. “I prioritize playing and when I went to the club with possible offers they told me I couldn’t go. Then I went to them with another one and they told me I couldn’t go because I was indispensable.”
With no solution in sight Herrerín believes that the time has come to truly reconsider his future with the club. Although still under contract through next season, the goalkeeper hints that he would like to leave.
“The truth is that there comes a time when if you aren’t completely at ease you ask yourself other things. Sometimes I have been too sincere. The club knows what I think and what I want. There is one season left on my contract and I don’t know what will happen in the end. We will talk calmly about things.”
Herrerín understands his situation. Unai Simón is the starting goalkeeper for the league and will be between the sticks in the Copa del Rey final. There isn’t much that Herrerín can do at this point, though he also recognizes that he’s not the only one without regular minutes.
“Everyone tells me that in the fact of adversity I should get up and turn the situation around. Inside Lezama they know how I am and how I behave on a day to day basis. I have spoken with Gaizka when I have had to speak to him. I don’t want to think about it anymore because the coaches are the ones paid to decide. I also put myself in the shoes of teammates who are neither called nor given minutes.”
Apart from his personal situation, Herrerín was asked whether or not the club has spoken to the players about temporarily lowering wages due to the football stoppage. The goalkeeper admitted that he hasn’t heard anything about it, though he would be willing to do whatever was necessary.
“At the moment we haven’t been asked to lower our wages. Fortunately we are in contact with the club at all times, with the captains, and it’s clear that we have always said if the club ever needed us to help that we would do it. But right now I think the club is fine. At the moment we don’t know what is going to happen with the league and everything is on hold.”
Athletic is the most financially stable club in La Liga with no debt and a large surplus. However, the Basques will not be immune to the financial impact that the coronavirus will have on football.
“This is a club where things have been done well for a long time. The club is perfectly designed economically and has a large budget for these situations. If the club needed it we would be the first ones who are ready to help, but at the moment we haven’t been told anything.”
For now Athletic have no plans to make a change this summer. The club wants Herrerín to play out the final year of his contract, though if he formally requests a transfer it would be considered if a replacement can be signed. Aitor Fernandéz and Jon Ander Serantes, who both have ties to Lezama, have been touted as possible signings.