A goal by Rodrigo Ely leaves Athletic without a point in Vitoria
Athletic Club fell to a 1-0 defeat in the derby against Alavés at Mendizorroza. A headed goal by Rodrigo Ely was enough to see Pablo Machín’s side take the three points.
A two-week break without a fixture offers Athletic Club the opportunity to pick themselves up and dust themselves off before facing Levante, in what will be Athletic’s fifth game of the season.
Throughout the first half, Athletic were the superior team. They looked dangerous down the flanks, especially on the left with Yuri Berchiche, but struggled with the final pass.
At one point, attacking-midfielder Raúl García combined well with Iñaki Williams down the right, but the Athletic Club no.9 was unable to finish off the move. Moments later García had an opportunity of his own but his shot hit the side netting.
It was a very tight match that could have been decided by the smallest of details, including a potential handball by Alavés involving Athletic Club’s Oihan Sancet.
Athletic suffered a blow early on in the second half when left-back Yuri Berchiche went down with an injury, meaning he was replaced by Mikel Balenziaga.
An individual error saw Lucas Pérez come close to putting the home side ahead and in the 74th minute the former Arsenal striker took the free-kick from which Ely headed home.
Athletic Club manger Gaizka Garitano brought on debutant Alex Berenguer and forward Asier Villalibre as the lions looked for an equaliser, and they almost got the much desired goal at the end when a Raúl García header was turned wide by Alavés keeper Pacheco.