Athletic Club manager Gaizka Garitano reiterated the importance of beating Villarreal CF on Tuesday night (22:00 CET) and winning consecutive LaLiga matches for the first time this season.
The Lions make the trip down to la Cerámica where they’ll face an in-form Villarreal, who are currently fourth in the LaLiga Santander table.
“We’re facing one of the best teams in LaLiga,” Garitano said at his pre-match press conference. “We’ll have to be at our best to win. But we’re confident about getting that second consecutive victory we’ve wanted for some time. Winning against Villarreal would have a huge impact.”
Garitano urged his players to make the most of Saturday’s crucial victory over SD Huesca by going into Tuesday’s fixture with the same win-at-all-costs mentality.
“The players, as well as the coaching staff, have to have that pressure to always win. We must be hungry to win, we’re at a great club, with high standards,” Garitano added.
“We know how difficult tomorrow’s match will be, but we won’t win if we’re not aware of the fact that getting a good result will be very positive for us.”
As for Tuesday’s opponents Villarreal, Garitano explained how new manager Unai Emery has improved the Yellows by adding “defensive solidity” to their already potent attacking options.
“It’s great team. We’ve done well in our last few away game and we’re going to one of the most difficult grounds in the league to take one of the teams with most quality,” he said.
“Under Emery, they’re much stronger defensively. They’ve always had good attacking players but now they also concede less goals.”
Going for a third final in 2021
Athletic face Levante at the Ciutat de Valéncia on Thursday in the second leg of the Copa del Rey semi-finals (1-1 first leg).
Highlights I Levante UD 1-1 Athletic Club (LaLiga Matchday 25)
A game of two penalties, as both sides get a point
Marcelino: “A victory for us would’ve been fair”
Marcelino bemoaned the defensive mistakes that led to Levante’s goal
Athletic held to frustrating draw by Levante
Despite constantly threatening, Athletic only pick up one point from a match where both goals came from the penalty spot
Confirmed line-ups: Levante UD vs Athletic Club
The XI’s for tonight’s LaLiga match at the Ciutat de Valéncia
Global TV Guide: Levante UD vs Athletic Club (LaLiga Matchday 25)
When and where to watch Athletic’s upcoming LaLiga match against Levante UD
Marcelino: “We’re focused on winning tomorrow”
Marcelino looks ahead to Friday night’s LaLiga Santander match against Levante UD
Squad list: Levante UD vs Athletic Club (LaLiga Matchday 25)
Marcelino has called up 23 players for Friday night’s clash with Levante UD at the Ciutat de València
A big week against Levante
Athletic will face Levante twice in six days, starting with a LaLiga fixture on Friday (21:00 CET)
Raúl García: “The more difficult the challenge, the better”
After extending his contract with Athletic Club until 2022, Raúl García expressed his intention to keep going “as long as he was up to the task of competing for this Club”