Over the duration of this calendar year, 12 footballers have made first-team debuts for Athletic Club. Six players for Athletic Club Women and six for the male first-team.
The first youngster to make their debut in 2020 was Irene Oguiza. The central midfielder from Durango made her first appearance in the Primera Iberdrola on January 19 as the lionesses lost 4-1 against Madrid CFF. A month later, during her first start, Irene suffered a serious knee injury against RC Deportivo.
On January 28, it was Jokin Ezkieta‘s turn. The goalkeeper put in a heroic performance in an away match against Tenerife in the last 16 of the Copa del Rey 2019-20. Minutes after the match had kicked-off, starting keeper Iago Herrerín was sent off, forcing Jokin to come off the bench for his debut. The young shotstopper played a vital role in Athletic’s victory. He made made important saves throughout the game and in the penalty shootout.
One month later, Unai Vencedor made his first-team debut. Manager Gaizka Garitano selected the Lezama graduate to play in the LaLiga Santander 2019-20 home match against CA Osasuna. The young central-midfielder almost played the full 90 minutes and even hit the post with a well-struck free-kick.
Barely a week after that, Naroa Uriarte came off the bench against Real Betis Féminas to make her senior debut. She replaced Andrea Sierra in the 77th minute and the lionesses went on to earn a 2-2 draw in their final match before competitions were suspended to the coronavirus outbreak.
After taking part in pre-season training with the first-team, winger Jon Morcillo made a starting debut against Granada in Athletic’s first LaLiga Santander match of the 2020-21 campaign. Morcillo played on the left wing as Athletic fell to a 2-0 defeat and gave a good account of himself.
On October 1, Iñigo Vicente made his first senior appearance when he replaced Iñaki Williams. Just like Morcillo, the creative winger had also been involved in pre-season training, having played in two friendlies.
Paula Arana made her debut in the lionesses’ first fixture of the current season. The striker performed well as Ángel Villacampa’s side defeated RC Deportivo 2-1 at Lezama.
A day later, Alex Berenguer pulled on the red-and-white stripes for the first time. The winger from Navarre, who moved to Athletic from Torino in the summer, made his Athletic debut in the LaLiga match against Deportivo Alaves at Mendizorrotza.
After arriving from Girondins de Bordeaux, Sophie Istillart came on as a substitute in Athletic Club Women’s rescheduled Copa 2019-20 semi-final against EDF Logroño. Unfortunately, the lionesses were knocked out of the competition after the match went to penalties.
Bibiane Schulze also made her debut in October. She came on for the final part of the match as the lionesses beat Sevilla FC 0-2 at the Estadio Jesús Navas.
Oier Zarraga was the last cub to become a lion in 2020. The centre-mid was heavily involved throughout pre-season, playing in three friendlies, and he made his full first-team debut in the LaLiga match against Levante at San Mamés.
Amaia Peña was the most recent lioness to make a first senior appearance. The goalkeeper made her debut in a 2-2 draw with Real Betis, and has played in two more matches since then.
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