Athletic Club head coach Gaizka Garitano is “optimistic” about the lions’ chances of defeating Valencia CF in their LaLiga Santander fixture on Saturday (December 12, kick-off at 14:00 CET) and promised his players are working on being more efficient in front of goal.
The lions travel down to Mestalla for tommorow’s clash with Valencia and Garitano’s squad is hoping to bounce back from last week’s home defeat against RC Celta.
“We’re optimistic about beating Valencia,” Garitano said in his pre-match press conference at Lezama. “It’s up to us and how well we play. We’ll be brave and look to be more clinical in attack.
“We’re only thinking about our own game and climbing up the league table. All of our energy is going into winning at Mestalla like we did last season.”
The boss acknowleged that Athletic, along with many other teams in LaLiga Santander, are finding it difficult to win back-to-back matches in 2020-21, putting this down to how competitive the competition is right now.
“Few teams are able to win regularly, everything’s very tight,” Garitano said. “It’s difficult for everyone and matches are being decided by the smallest of margins.
“It’s difficult to dominate your opponent. Nevertheless, the team is competitive and we’re going to try and beat Valencia. We’re determined to do so.”
Athletic face a Valencia team going through a rough patch. Javi Gracia’s side are equal on points with the lions, having not won a match since defeating Real Madrid in November.
The lions are keen to take advantage of their opposition’s dip in form and replicate the good result they managed at Mestalla last season.
“Valencia like to play on the counter-attack,” Garitano added. “They’re young but the players have a lot of quality. We’ll try to do things well, we’ll press high and be more clinical. The team is desperate to repeat last season’s good match.
“We’re Athletic and tomorrow we’ll be thinking about winning. I have a lot of faith in my players.”
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