Athletic Club - RC Recreativo
Matchday 11

Athletic Club - RC Recreativo

Athletic Club
Athletic Club
RC Recreativo
RC Recreativo
  • 51'61' Etxeberria

LocationSan Mamés , Bilbo

Athletic Club 2 Recreativo 0: The first and more than deserving triumph at home

Athletic Club have won for the first time at San Mamés this season after having…

Athletic Club

Athletic Club have won for the first time at San Mamés this season after having beaten Recreativo de Huelva by 2-0 which was a well-deserved victory. Joseba Etxeberria, scored the two goals during the second half in his 400th League match whilst wearing our Club’s jersey and is one goal away from scoring his 100th as a Red-White player.

The Red-Whites were superior at the start of both the first and second halves and had many goal scoring opportunities; however, they had to wait until the second half to finish off what was to be a good group effort therefore putting to an end to the bad image offered only a few days ago against Getafe. A do or die affair as the overall results of the weekend have allowed the Club to climb its way up to the halfway mark of the league ladder but if they had lost the team would have been at the bottom with only two or three rival teams behind them. At least now the players are at ease due to our position in the standings and considering the tremendous evenness between almost all of the teams. That is to say, a week of calmness.

There were few novelties in the starting eleven line up, except for Ustaritz who had to step in for the sanctioned player Amorebieta and the return of Javi Martínez to the centre. On behalf of the visitors, there were two lines behind Sinama who was in charge of the attack department. The solution to the difficulties they were having came with diagonal balls kicked to the defenders from behind, a manoeuvre which paid off in the early stages of the match, however these could not be transformed into goals.

Aduriz had his first goal scoring opportunity in the 8th minute, but his header went astray just before being brought down by Sorrentino, who went for the ball too late and came across a head instead of a yellow ball. Penalty? Debatable, but rarely does the toss of a coin favour the Red-Whites. Without time to complain Gabilondo passed the ball to the right to Susaeta, however his angled shot at goal just missed by centimetres in the 9th minute. One minute later Aduriz who was on the left, showed good control but the ball was not struck hard enough to beat the rival goalkeeper. In the 16th minute a foul shot taken by Orbaiz was finished off by Aduriz then deflected to corner by Sorrentino. Amazingly, one of the linesmen saw what nobody else had seen: Aduriz offside.

No time to complain once more, because this time Recreativo had their best goal scoring opportunity of the match in the 17th, when Sinama took a shot at goal but a good save by Iraizoz put a damper on things. And to finish off what was an impetuous start by the local team, Gabilondo fired away in the 24th minute with the left, but Sorrentino was able to repel the ball which ended up being a corner kick. From then on Recreativo improved the field positioning somewhat and Athletic slackened the pace, a tendency which lead could have led to a goalless draw. Similar to what had happened a week ago against Betis.

Even so, the reward for such a big effort had to come and it did after the halftime break. On the one hand, Víctor Muñoz, Recreativo’s coach, during the break thought that now was the time to send Javi Guerrero and Gerard in to replace the Portuguese players, Martins and Varela. Guerrero situated himself behind Sinama, Gerard in the double pivot position and Camuñas was sent to cover the right wing. An offensive change to the drawing board which led to a loss of ability in the midfield area of the pitch, seeing that it was C. Martins who had done the most harm during the first half.

In the meantime, Athletic did not make any changes and played with the same virtues shown in the first half. Besides, our team is not always going to be the absent-minded ones or the laughing stock for some people. Recreativo were asleep, and paid dearly. A foul shot was taken by Koikili who then passed the ball to Gabilondo, who in turn passed it onto Aduriz who made a break down the right wing where Iraola was waiting, who without stopping sent the ball to the heart of the goal area. Susaeta couldn’t reach it but Etxeberria could and he scored the 1st goal of the match with his left in minute 51 of the game.

The hardest part was over with and our team did not make the same costly mistakes as they had made whilst playing against Zaragoza and Almería. They had learnt their lesson, the best approach in this situation is to put twice as much effort in attack and not take one step backwards.

What’s more, with faith and determination Etxeberria made a great individual move in the 58th minute, but Aduriz was unable to finish it off, however, he made up for it in the 62nd minute. Athletic took a right corner kick, Gabilondo’s shot was cleared by a defender, Susaeta passed the ball to the goal area once again, once more with a header and against an over confident Sorrentino and a wonderful jump by Aduriz did the rest. The ball was practically placed at Etxeberria’s feet, who only had to guide the ball into the back of the net. Two nil and an end to all those comments made by people who said they couldn’t remember the last time Etxeberria had scored a goal at San Mamés. Susaeta could have scored in the 62nd minute from a pass by Etxeberria, but Sorrentino was more alive than ever on this occasion.

The intensity of the match had dropped, despite the fact that Víctor Muñoz sent Marquitos in for Camuñas, which resulted in his team being able to do more harm when attacking down the right wing. However, this only resulted in several corners and a goal scoring opportunity for Javi Guerrero which Ocio ruined in the 73rd minute.

Moreover, the permissiveness of the referee in comparison with previous encounters, especially at the time calling of fouls, had changed and in this match a serious of cards were given and whilst there was one argument after the other the match came to end and it is the third match in which the team have not had a goal scored against them. Not bad if we consider it was Yeste’s first day back after months of inactivity but who can make it so that the team can get its identity and sense of composure back.

Just like last season Athletic were able to win their first league match at San Mamés at Recreativo’s expense, the difference being that this season this has been achieved in the 11th match day round and last season this was not achieved until the 14th, last year the victory over Recreativo came in the 14th round and resulted in a points tally of 11 and this season after yesterday’s win we already have 13. Despite everything, these three points should bolster the team just in time for Sunday’s match at Lluis Companys Stadium before the battle for the Copa.