The hiring of Joseba Etxeberria has lit a fire at Bilbao Athletic. After failing to qualify for the promotional playoffs last season the Kumeak have set their sights on a top-four finish and have looked very strong throughout the preseason. The team has yet to lose a game so far this summer and continued their impressive run on Wednesday with a 2-2 draw against Segunda side Numancia.
Playing against a team from a higher division is always a good test, but Bilbao Athletic took it a step further by dominating for long stretches of the match. Just six minutes into the game Antonio Salado scored from a corner kick but former Lezama standout was able to do the same for Numancia just 15 minutes later. Ewan Urain would restore Bilbao Athletic’s lead with 20 minutes left to play in the first half.
Etxeberria made several changes throughout the second half, as did Numancia, which slowed down the pace of play and rhythm. It looked as though the Kumeak were heading for victory until Numancia were awarded a penalty and equalized in the 85th minute. Despite not getting the win, it was a very strong showing against a team from the Segunda and the performance will continue to build confidence moving forward.
CD Basconia were also in action on Wednesday and won their third match of the preseason. Mikel Kortazar scored the game’s only goal in the opening minute against Burgos as the Basauritarras have also gone unbeaten so far this summer. Like Bilbao Athletic, Patxi Salinas has Basconia firing on all cylinders ahead of what will be a very competitive year in the Tercera.