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Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story
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  1. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story



    HELLO!!!!!

    Right here I go with a save with my favourite team to manage on FM17. Had 2 aborted saves already for one reason or another (crashed save and the new update changing everything on the day I started it) and have been playing a save with Stonecold but its time for me to go solo again (as well as carryin gon with Stonecold).

    So my regular followers will know about my affinity with Bilbao thanks to my save that I had a few years back that was immense thanks to some regen - cant remember his name lol - Aitor somebody? My aim is simple - take Athletic to the top of not only Spanish but also world football.

    You will probably know this but I should say it anyway - the main challenge with Bilbao is the fact that you can only sign players from the Basque area of Spain or Spaniards who are 16y/o or younger so they have their football education in the Basque region.

    Regarding the manager I am going to be myself and not this Aitor fella and I will start with the lowest of the low in experience and coaching badges etc.

    Please follow, like, look, read and comment!!!!!

    --

    SEASON ACHIEVEMENTS

    SEASON
    LEAGUE
    CUP
    SUPER CUP
    CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
    EUROPA LEAGUE
    EURO SUPER CUP
    WORLD CLUB CUP
    2016-17
    4th
    SF
    -
    -
    WINNERS
    -
    -
    2017-18
    2nd
    5th Rnd
    -
    Quarter Final
    -
    WINNERS
    -
    2018-19
    3rd
    QF
    -
    Group Stage
    WINNERS
    -
    -
    20019-20
    WINNERS
    5th Rnd
    -
    WINNERS
    -
    WINNERS
    -
    2020-21


    WINNERS

    -
    Runners Up


    Last edited by KLIPPYBO; 13/05/2017 at 09:36 AM.

  2. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    PRE-SEASON & AUGUST

    Pre-season with Athletic was simple - not really anyone to buy and no offers for me to sell anyone (not that I wanted to) so it was all about structuring the club from philosophies to backroom staff.

    Having assessed my squad it has become apparent that if I suffer an injury crisis I will be in big trouble and with the lack of players to recruit it is vital that we stay healthy. Unfortunately one of my C team players didn't and did his cruciate ligaments and is out for 13 months - I promptly released him as he was shit anyway!

    --



    SQUAD

    The main thing with Bilbao is to find a great keeper and a great striker - the rest tend to sort themselves out sooner but more likely later. Fortunately in the shape and form of Kepa and Asier Villalibre I have 2 great prospects. Kepa in goal will be my first choice keeper while Villalibre will be Aduriz's understudy before he takes over the mantle.

    In defence Aymeric Laporte is one of the best defenders in Europe and being so young he needs to be kept at all costs. San Jose will partner him while De Marcos will be RB and either Lekue or Balenziaga will be LB.

    Benat will be my creator in chief in midfield and Iturraspe, although a defensive minded midfielder at heart, will also be asked to provide both defensive cover as well as provide a spark going forward.

    Inaki Williams is a must keep player (most of them are tbh) as the 22y/o is rapid and versatile. Muniain will be LW and Raul Garcia will be AMC but Susaeta will be hovering about trying to get into the side and changes will be made.

    Up front it is all about Aduriz and the aforementioned Villalibre. At 35 Aduriz just has to hang on in there for a season maybe 2 just so Villalibre can take over.

    --

    TACTICS

    I will play a 4-2-3-1 formation as I feel that will suit the players that I have from the 2 ball playing centre halves to the ancient but irrepressible target man Aduriz up front.
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-athletic-bilbao_-overview.png

    Williams will probably be my RW as I expect Raul Garcia to be my shadow striker but form will dictate who plays as 4 into 3 don't go with Muniain, Raul Garcia, Williams and Susaeta all able to play in every AM position.

    --

    TRANSFERS


    I didn't sign a single player for the 1st team but I did sign a certain player which went down well with the fans - Andoni Iraola.

    The 34y/o is retiring at the end of the season but as he is a club icon I decided to bring him in to help the B side out and tutor a player or two.
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-andoni-iraola_-overview-profile.png

    I signed a few regens for the U19 squad as they were a bit short but I also spent almost a million quid on 2 youngsters - Aitor Bunuel from Osasuna for £700,000 and Alex Millan from Real Zaragoza for £140,000.
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-aitor-bunuel_-overview-profile.pngSuccess Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-alex-millan_-overview-profile.png

    --

    v
    Sporting Gijon 1 (Cop 8)
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Aduriz 29, San Jose 81pen, Williams 83)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Boveda (Yeray), Iturraspe (Rico), Benat, Susaeta, Williams, Muniain (Sabin), Aduriz*

    So my first game of my career is over and after a sticky start we emerged victors thanks to two late goals from San Jose and Williams. I am delighted with this result as we were without a few players through injury - Raul Garcia, Balenziaga and Lekue. A great start!


    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Benat 11, Williams 21, Susaeta 40)
    Valencia 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos (Lekue), San Jose, Laporte, Boveda, Iturraspe, Benat*, Susaeta, Williams, Muniain (Sabin), Aduriz (Villalibre)

    Wow!!! This was truly a great performance. The opener was a stunning long range free kick from Benat while the 2nd was an amazing team move finished by Inaki Williams. We also missed several other opportunities which could have made it even more embarrassing for Valencia.


    --



    OTHER NEWS

    So that's the start and a fantastic one at that!!! In the Europa League we will be up against Celtic, Mainz and Aristu Giurgiu or something like that.



    Transfer wise it was all quiet in La Liga - literally there was nothing of note!

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  3. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    SEPTEMBER

    v
    Osasuna 0
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Williams 14)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Boveda (Lekue), Iturraspe, Benat, Susaeta (Raul Garcia), Williams*, Muniain, Aduriz (Villalibre)

    Matches against Osasuna are derby fixtures as they are a fellow Basque side and we just edged it here thanks to Williams' strike. This win makes it 3 out of 3 for us and we are top after both Barcelona and Real Madrid lost!

    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League Group C
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Benat 7, Aduriz 10, Raul Garcia 27)
    Celtic 0

    Lineup
    - Kepa, Lekue, Yeray, Etxeita (Elustondo), Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat* (Rico), Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain (Sabin), Aduriz

    I decided to rest a few players here and fortunately the gamble paid off as we came out of the blocks on fire and scored 3 in the first half hour to kill the game dead.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 5 (Muniain 5, 13, Aduriz 45, 76, Balenziaga 46)
    Celta Vigo 2 (Guidetti 9, 52)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Etxeita), Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta (Lekue), Williams, Muniain*, Aduriz

    Our 100% record continues! This was a great performance and Iker Muniain scored a beauty. Balenziaga's goal was comical as their keeper went walkabout at a free kick to allow him to score into an empty net.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (San Jose 31)
    Barcelona 3 (Rafinha 1, Neymar 50, 79)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga (Lekue), Iturraspe (Raul Garcia), Benat, Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Aduriz (Villalibre)

    This was always going to be a true test for us and it proved to be a harsh lesson. Barca were without Messi and Suarez but it was Neymar who destroyed us with 2 solo goals.

    --

    v
    Eibar 0
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Benat 20, Aduriz 45, Iturraspe 46)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe*, Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta (Sabin), Williams, Muniain, Aduriz

    This was a very impressive performance in a fixture that is a local derby. Iturraspe's goal was a thing of beauty as it was a great team move with rapid short range one touch passing.


    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League Group C
    Astra Giurgiu 1 (Budescu 46)
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Sabin 2, 18, 70, Rico 82)

    Lineup
    - Kepa, Lekue, Yeray, Etxeita (Elustondo), Boveda, Rico, Benat, Susaeta (Oteo), Raul Garcia, Sabin*, Villalibre (Vicente)

    Sabin was the man here as he scored a hat-trick and assisted the other as I rested most of my first XI. The great run of form continues!

    --

    SUMMARY


    I have got to be happy with my first full month of matches. The games came thick and fast with games coming every 3 days. During the month we had 2 derby victories, 2 wins in Europe plus a big win against Celta Vigo with the only blip being a defeat against Barcelona.

    Regarding personnel the stand out so far is Inaki Williams, I had ear marked him down as my RW but with Raul Garcia out injured he has played as a shadow striker behind Aduriz and I cant see him being shifted anytime soon.

    We end the month in 2nd spot and level top while my B team is also in 2nd spot. If this continues I will be amazed so I will make the most of it while it lasts.

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    INAKI WILLIAMS
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-inaki-williams_-overview-profile.png

    --
    LEAGUE TABLE
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages.png



    Last edited by KLIPPYBO; 25/03/2017 at 08:40 PM.
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  4. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    OCTOBER

    v
    Malaga 2 (Sandro 18, Recio 86)
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Aduriz 22, Williams 57)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta (Lekue), Williams, Muniain (Sabin), Aduriz*

    Meh. They took the lead when San Jose laboured on the ball and we levelled in similar circumstances. Williams struck for us but we conceded late on to drop 2 points.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Williams 62, San Jose 80pen)
    Villarreal 2 (Soriano 40, Castillejo 60)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Raul Garcia), Benat, Susaeta, Williams*, Muniain (Sabin), Aduriz (Villalibre)

    I had high hopes going into this match but it wasn't to be as we fell behind by 2 goals. Fortunately we battled back to level and even though they had a man sent-off when they conceded the penalty we couldn't capitalise.

    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League Group C
    Mainz 0
    Athletic Bilbao 0

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Yeray (Elustondo), Etxeita*, Boveda, Eraso, Rico, Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Sabin, Villalibre (Vicente)

    Another draw but this should and could have been better as they had a man sent-off in the first half. Hey ho.


    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Aduriz 45, Iturraspe 72, San Jose 78)
    Real Sociedad 2 (Juanmi 22, Elustondo 82)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos (Lekue), San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat (Rico), Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain (Sabin), Aduriz

    WOOOO!!!! Victory comes here against our fiercest rivals. We went behind and crucially levelled just before half-time. Then for the 3rd game in a row my opponents had a man sent-off but this time we took advantage to score twice and despite conceding we won the match.

    --

    v
    Atletico Madrid 5 (Griezmann 11, Vrsaljko 17, Gameiro 30, 45, 54)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (San Jose 81)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos (Lekue), San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain (Sabin), Aduriz (Villalibre)

    What the fuck happened here I do not know but this was 5 going on 50 as we were absolutely terrible. NOT HAPPY!!!

    --

    v
    Alaves 0
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Aduriz 38, San Jose 42pen)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose*, Laporte (Yeray), Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat, Susaeta (Lekue), Raul Garcia (Sabin), Muniain, Aduriz

    It was imperative that we won this game after the abhorration that was our previous fixture and we did that although it wasn't pretty.

    --

    SUMMARY

    This month had its moments but it wasn't as beneficial as the previous month. We drew a few games but more importantly we defeated Sociedad in the Vasco derby. Unfortunately that high was followed by the momentous low that was the 5-1 thrashing by Atletico Madrid.

    We end the month in 4th place with a 5pt cushion over the 5th place side which is pretty decent.

    Mikel San Jose was stupid in front of goal this month as he scored 4 goals in 5 appearances which is incredible for a centre half. Inaki Williams started the month well but then got injured but he is almost back!

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    MIKEL SAN JOSE
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-mikel-san-jose_-overview-profile.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-2.png
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  5. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    NOVEMBER

    v
    UEFA Europa League Group C
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Villalibre 10, 84)
    Mainz 1 (Cordoba 7)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue (Elustondo), Etxeita, Yeray, Saborit, Eraso (Nolaskoain), Rico, Oteo, Raul Garcia, Sabin (Seguin), Villalibre*

    This win secures qualification for the knockout stages. Villalibre scored his first goals for the club which will be a massive boost for the young lad.

    --

    v
    Leganes 0
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Aduriz 39)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos*, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat (Rico), Williams, Raul Garcia (Sabin), Muniain, Aduriz

    Leganes are bottom of the table without a win and look doomed already but they put up a fight here against us but we prevailed.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (San Jose 44, Michel og65, Muniain 76)
    Las Palmas 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat*, Susaeta, Williams (Villalibre), Muniain, Aduriz (Raul Garcia)

    This win takes us back up to 2nd place. San Jose celebrated signing his new contract by scoring the opener here. Bad news though - Aduriz got injured in the 1st minute and is out for 5-6 weeks.

    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League Group C
    Celtic 2 (Griffiths 28, Dembele 85)
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Sabin 50, Boveda 61)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita (Elustondo), Yeray, Boveda, Eraso (Nolaskoain), Rico, De Marcos, Raul Garcia, Sabin*, Villalibre (Vicente)

    As long as we didn't get beat I would have been happy. We didn't get beat - I am happy lol.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Raul Garcia 29)
    Deportivo La Coruna 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Rico), Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain*, Williams (Villalibre)

    A hard fought victory here which gives us 4 in a row in the league.

    --

    v
    Copa del Rey 4th Round 1st Leg
    Logrones 0
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Sabin 13, Raul Garcia 57pen)


    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita (Elustondo), Yeray, Boveda, Eraso, Rico, Oteo (Seguin), Raul Garcia*, Sabin, Villalibre (Vicente)

    Logrones are behind my B team in their league so its no surprise that an under strength side won here.

    --

    SUMMARY

    Any month where you don't lose a game is a good month so I am happy with how things went. We progressed in Europe and have all but qualified in the domestic cup while in the league we are sitting pretty in 2nd place.

    Some other stories though. Williams and Laporte want Champions League football and I have promised them that for next year so we better not slip up! Lekue and San Jose signed new long term contracts and both the youth and training facilities are getting upgraded.

    Finally. presidential elections are upcoming so who knows what that will change!

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    RAUL GARCIA
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-raul-garcia_-overview-profile.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-3.png
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  6. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    DECEMBER

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 0
    Real Betis 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat (Rico), Susaeta, Raul Garcia (Villalibre), Muniain, Williams

    A missed opportunity here as Mikel San Jose missed a penalty in the 2nd half. Grrr.

    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League Group C
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Villalibre 30)
    Astra Giurgiu 1 (Ionita 55)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita, Yeray (Elustondo), Boveda, Eraso, Rico, De Marcos, Raul Garcia, Sabin, Villalibre (Vicente)

    I expected a victory here but we only needed a point to win the group which we achieved so I am not too disappointed.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Benat 36)
    Granada 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Yeray), Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat, Susaeta (Raul Garcia), Williams, Muniain (Sabin), Villalibre

    It was nice to get back to winning ways here. Once again the opposition had a man sent-off against us but we didn't add to the scoreline afterwards unfortunately. This is our 6th clean sheet in a row in the league.

    --

    v
    Espanyol 2 (Gerard 8, 70)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (San Jose 59pen)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Yeray), Balenziaga (Lekue), Iturraspe, Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Villalibre

    Our unbeaten run comes to an end here in controversial circumstances. We were a goal down when we scored a perfectly good goal it seemed but it was ruled out. We did level straight away but a defensive error cost us dear - that and 3 players getting injured!

    --

    v
    Copa del Rey 4th Round 2nd Leg
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Raul Garcia 65, 81)
    Logrones 0

    (Agg: 4-0 )

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita, Yeray, Boveda, Eraso (Nolaskoain), Rico, Oteo, Raul Garcia*, Sabin (Seguin), Villalibre (Vicente)

    --

    v
    Real Madrid 3 (Ronaldo 48, 61, 89)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Muniain 50)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Rico), Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Aduriz (Williams)

    Normally a narrow defeat would be relatively acceptable but they had Marcelo sent-off early doors so this was a missed opportunity.

    --

    SUMMARY


    This month wasn't great as we stumbled a bit in the league as we only won once while in the 2 cup games we weren't overly convincing either. Hopefully we will pick up in January.

    Bad news arrived at the end of the month when Asier Villalibre broke his ankle and is out for 3 months. Also Yeray is unavailable for the rest of the season due to medical reasons which was a shock.

    Finally Andoni Iraola retired. He featured for my B team and did well but I thought he was due to retire at the end of the season and had planned a final swan song for him - alas it was not to be.

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    KEPA

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-kepa_-overview-profile.png
    he wasn't amazing but he deserves recognition after his long run of matches where he kept a clean sheet.

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-4.png

  7. I hope this save will reach the heights of some of the previous ones!

    Re. Yeray, I was wondering/shocked about that 6-months medical sideline during my Athletic game as well. I am wondering if it has something to do with him being diagnosed and treated for cancer IRL:
    Athletic Bilbao's Yeray Alvarez grateful for support after cancer diagnosis - ESPN FC

  8. Great to see you back at Bilbao mate!! I'm 5 seasons deep with Chelsea atm and finding some ridiculous regens so hoping you can develop some beasts too. They seem even better in this FM.
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  9. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend
    Quote Originally Posted by Knoblauch View Post
    I hope this save will reach the heights of some of the previous ones!

    Re. Yeray, I was wondering/shocked about that 6-months medical sideline during my Athletic game as well. I am wondering if it has something to do with him being diagnosed and treated for cancer IRL:
    Athletic Bilbao's Yeray Alvarez grateful for support after cancer diagnosis - ESPN FC
    I didn't know this. Not good. Top top talent in real life

  10. All the best with this save! Followed this before!

  11. Got to be pleased with the start to your season. KIU
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  12. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    JANUARY

    v
    Copa del Rey 5th Round 1st Leg
    Eibar 1 (Kike 9)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Aduriz 32)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat*, Susaeta, Raul Garcia (Sabin), Muniain (Lekue), Aduriz (Williams)

    Not great but not a disaster. We certainly are not firing on all cylinders just now.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 5 (Raul Garcia 22, 29, Susaeta 26, 71, Sabin 40)
    Sevilla 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Etxeita), Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Muniain), Benat (Rico), Susaeta*, Raul Garcia, Sabin, Williams

    That's better!!! Raul Garcia's 2nd goal was a long range screamer. By far our best performance of the season so far.

    --

    v
    Copa del Rey 5th Round 2nd Leg
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Susaeta 45, Williams 97, Aduriz 103)
    Eibar 2 (Nano 18, 113)
    AET
    (Agg: 4-3)


    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Eraso), Rico, Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Sabin (Muniain), Williams

    Eibar have sacked their manager since the first leg and they did ok here but when I put Aduriz on at the start of extra time they couldn't cope.

    --

    v
    Valencia 3 (Orellana 20, Rodrigo 79, 80)
    Athletic Bilbao 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Lekue (Balenziaga), Iturraspe, Rico (Benat), Williams, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Aduriz (Susaeta)

    We were awful here but my players are shattered and I had to rest a few but no excuses. We have lost 3 of our last 4 games in the league which is a great concern.

    --

    v
    Copa del Rey Quarter Final 1st Leg
    Granada 1 (Ponce 49)
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Williams 20, Aduriz 29, Iturraspe 45, Muniain 78)


    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose (Etxeita), Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat*, Susaeta, Williams (Raul Garcia), Muniain, Aduriz (Vicente)

    We bounced back in a terrific fashion here as we battered Granada. Very pleased with this victory and it means I can rest a few players in the 2nd leg.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Aduriz 4, Cuellar og17)
    Sporting Gijon 0

    Lineup
    - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Rico), Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta (Lekue), Williams*, Muniain, Aduriz

    --

    v
    Copa del Rey Quarter Final 2nd Leg
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (De Marcos 76, Rico 84pen)
    Granada 2 (Ponce 37, Ramos 39)
    (Agg: 6-3)

    Lineup
    - Kepa, Boveda, Etxeita, Elustondo, Lekue, Eraso, Rico*, De Marcos, Raul Garcia (Nolaskoain), Sabin (Seguin), Vicente

    At half-time I was a bit concerned but we stuck at it and fought back to get a draw. Malaga thumped Barcelona 4-0 elsewhere!!!

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Aduriz 3, 86, San Jose 36pen, Williams 90)

    Osasuna 2 (Digard 10, Sanjurjo 68)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Rico), Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Aduriz*

    Derby day victory here as we left it late to get it and it was important as I was involved in a war of words with their manager beforehand!

    --

    SUMMARY

    I forgot how hectic a month January can be in Spanish football as we played 8 games during the month. On the whole we did pretty well after a shaky start and we are right in the middle of a 4 way race for the title although I don't for one minute think we can win it.

    Transfer wise nothing happened. Well nothing got completed. I tried to bring in Mikel Merino but I didn't have the funds and I rejected bids for Williams, Muniain, Aduriz and Iturraspe.

    Elsewhere regarding transfers Malaga sold young star striker to Bayern for £30m, Sergi Roberto left Barcelona to join Arsenal for £25m and Nacho left Real Madrid to join PSG for £16m. Not many incoming transfers at all!

    Finally after the presidential elections I have a new chairman as Urrutia lost out. Hopefully I will get on with the new guy at the helm.
    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH

    ARITZ ADURIZ
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-aritz-aduriz_-overview-attributes.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-5.png

    Last edited by KLIPPYBO; 31/03/2017 at 01:14 PM.
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  13. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    FEBRUARY

    v
    Copa del Rey Semi Final 1st Leg
    Real Madrid 2 (Ronaldo 19, 22pen)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Williams 81)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Rico), Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta (Lekue), Williams, Muniain, Aduriz

    I am pleased with the result and performance here as all I wanted was to still be very much in the tie come the 2nd leg. Fingers crossed! Kepa picked up a knock and will miss the next game - his first of the season.

    --

    v
    Celta Vigo 0
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Susaeta 19, 42, Muniain 77)

    Lineup - Iraizoz, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga (Boveda), Iturraspe, Benat (Rico), Susaeta, Williams, Muniain*, Aduriz (Vicente)

    Iraizoz came in for his 1st appearance of the season here and it was his 300th for the club apparently. We were very impressive here which bodes well.

    --

    v
    Copa del Rey Semi Final 2nd Leg
    Athletic Bilbao 0
    Real Madrid 2 (Ronaldo 29, Morata 74)
    (Agg: 1-4)

    Lineup - Iraizoz, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Rico), Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Aduriz (Vicente)

    Meh. This was a case of what could have been as we started on fire and missed several opportunities which in the end cost us. Iraizoz fucked up for the 1st goal and it was pretty much over then.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Aduriz 20, 56, Luna og51, Muniain 88)
    Eibar 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat, Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Aduriz*

    I cant complain here as shown by the fact I didn't substitute anyone so good was our performance. Aduriz was immense and Muniain's goal was a screamer.

    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League 1st Round 1st Leg
    Standard Liege 2 (Sa 6, Bakaj 9)
    Athletic Bilbao 5 (Susaeta 36, Aduriz 37, Raul Garcia 45, Williams 48, Iturraspe 65)

    Lineup
    - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Etxeita), Balenziaga (Boveda), Iturraspe, Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Williams*, Aduriz (Vicente)

    After 10min I was fuming as we went 2 down and San Jose missed a penalty but then we battered them. We scored some great goals including a long range thunderbolt from Raul Garcia.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Susaeta 29, Aduriz 36, 82)
    Malaga 1 (Williams og26)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Raul Garcia), Benat (Rico), Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Aduriz

    Another win notched up here. At 1-1 San Jose missed a penalty but from the resulting corner Aduriz scored and they also missed a penalty at 1-1.

    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League 1st Round 2nd Leg
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Vicente 24, 30, 68pen, Oteo 32)
    Standard Liege 2 (Bakaj 6, Sa 21)
    (Agg: 9-4)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita, Elustondo, Boveda, Eraso (Iturraspe), Rico, Oteo, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Vicente*

    Once again we fell 2 behind to Liege and battled back to win. Inigo Vicente finally got off the mark for the first team and scored a great hat-trick.

    --

    v
    Barcelona 3 (Neymar 3, Arda Turan 9, Suarez 17)
    Athletic Bilbao 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Raul Garcia (Rico), Susaeta, Williams, Muniain (Sabin), Aduriz (Vicente)

    Any fanciful notions of ourselves winning the title were well and truly quashed here. We have a long way to go to be able to match the likes of Barcelona and Real Madrid.

    --

    SUMMARY

    I said last month was crazy with fixtures but this one was worse as it was a shorter month and we fitted in 8 games! In the league we did pretty well winning every game until Barcelona taught us a lesson. Our small title hopes have been extinguished but if we can somehow manage to finish above one of the big 3 that would be amazing.

    We narrowly lost out to Real Madrid in the cup semi which was disappointing as we played well and in Europe we blitzed past Standard Liege despite falling 2 down in both games to win 9-4 on aggregate. In the next round we will play another Belgian side - Anderlecht.

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    MARKEL SUSAETA
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-markel-susaeta_-overview-profile.png
    --

    LEAGUE TABLE
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages.png

    Death Ball likes this.

  14. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    MARCH

    v
    Villarreal 1 (Jose Angel 78)
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (San Jose 30pen, 62pen)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose*, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Etxeita), Raul Garcia (Rico), Susaeta, Williams (Sabin), Muniain, Aduriz

    A hard fought victory here and we benefitted from their player, Mario, giving away two penalties which were both put away by Mikel San Jose.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 0
    Atletico Madrid 2 (Griezmann 61, Gameiro 70)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Rico), Benat, Susaeta (Lekue), Raul Garcia, Muniain, Aduriz (Vicente)

    We were poor here and never troubled Atletico. Pretty dismal tbh.

    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League 2nd Round 1st Leg
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Aduriz 16, 51, Raul Garcia 89)
    Anderlecht 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain (Sabin), Aduriz*

    I am very pleased with the margin of the victory here as it means I can rest a few players for the 2nd leg. The big derby is next........

    --

    v
    Real Sociedad 2 (Juanmi 32, Agirretxe 74)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Benat 14)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga (Boveda), Rico (Eraso), Benat* (Sabin), Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Aduriz

    Derby day defeat and I am gutted. My players are shattered and in the end Sociedad made us pay. The key moment came when I subbed Benat who ended up being man of the match and we then lost our momentum. 2 league defeats in a row now.

    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League 2nd Round 2nd Leg
    Anderlecht 2 (Welthon 22, Chipciu 73)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Vicente 41)
    (Agg: 2-4)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita, Elustondo, Boveda, Eraso, Rico, Oteo, Raul Garcia, Sabin, Vicente (Seguin)

    While I am disappointed to lose our first game in the competition I am generally pleased that we have won through and that Vicente notched another goal.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Benat 1)
    Alaves 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Etxeita, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Eraso), Benat* (Rico), Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Aduriz (Sabin)

    Benat's first minute free kick proved to be the difference here. They had a man sent-off late on.

    --

    SUMMARY

    A tough month this as we faltered in the league by losing to Atletico Madrid and more importantly the big derby match against Real Sociedad. We also lost in Europe but fortunately we got through to the quarter finals where we will play Shakhtar Donetsk.

    As for the all important intake of new youth team players my intake was distinctly average but there was one player who stood out.....
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-alejandro-aranburu_-overview-profile.png

    I also picked up this lad on a free transfer.....
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-jose-maria_-overview-profile.png
    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    BENAT
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-benat_-overview-profile.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-2.png
    Last edited by KLIPPYBO; 31/03/2017 at 10:59 PM.

  15. looking good so far...always tempted to do a bilbao save but it's the only basque rule that puts me off

  16. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend
    Quote Originally Posted by Cbarber871 View Post
    looking good so far...always tempted to do a bilbao save but it's the only basque rule that puts me off
    thanks - if it wasn't for the rule it wouldn't be near as fun. try it out!

  17. Quote Originally Posted by KLIPPYBO View Post
    thanks - if it wasn't for the rule it wouldn't be near as fun. try it out!
    i may do..i'm doing the sir alex ferguson challenge at the moment

  18. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    APRIL

    v
    Las Palmas 2 (Vicente 65, Tana 66)
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Williams 6, 89)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat (Villalibre), Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Williams*

    Before the match Aduriz got injured for 3 weeks which is a major blow and with Villalibre just coming back I put faith in Inaki Williams and he did great although he was playing as an AMC when he scored the late equaliser.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Benat 23, Raul Garcia 45, Sabin 69)
    Leganes 1 (Machis 90)

    Lineup - Iraizoz, De Marcos (Lekue), San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat*, Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain (Sabin), Williams (Villalibre)

    This time Kepa picked up a knock just before the game arrived but fortunately he will be back for the next game. Doomed Leganes shouldn't have stood a chance and they didn't.

    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League Quarter-Final 1st Leg
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Laporte 27, Williams 48, Benat 72)
    Shakhtar Donetsk 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Rico), Benat*, Susaeta, Raul Garcia (Villalibre), Muniain, Williams

    I am delighted both with the margin of the victory and the performance in which we put on. Laporte finally headed in his 1st goal of the season, Williams scored on a counter and Benat scored a screamer.

    --

    v
    Deportivo La Coruna 0
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Villalibre 6, Williams 16, Muniain 51)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Rico), Benat, Susaeta, Williams*, Muniain (Sabin), Villalibre (Aduriz)

    We relegated Leganes in our last league match and put a nail in Deportivo's coffin here. Williams was unplayable and I am pleased that Villalibre got off the mark in the league.


    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League Quarter-Final 2nd Leg
    Shakhtar Donetsk 4 (Taison 22, 55, 60, Bernard 70)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Rico 38)
    (Agg: 4-4 - Athletic Bilbao win on away goals)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita, Elustondo, Boveda, Eraso, Rico, Aranburu, Seguin, Sabin, Vicente (Nolaskoain)

    With a 3 goal lead I decided to rest my first team and play some backups, kids and B team players. 16y/o youth intake player Aranburu made his debut and I would have played 15y/o Jose Maria if he was eligible.

    In the end we got away with it - JUST!!!! Had a few nervy moments but we managed to hold on.


    --

    v
    Real Betis 2 (Nahuel 52, Sanabria 60)
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Benat 34, San Jose 39pen)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Etxeita), Benat*, Susaeta, Williams, Muniain (Sabin), Aduriz (Villalibre)

    I am pretty pissed off that we threw away a 2 goal lead here and a win would have given us Champions League qualification.

    --

    SUMMARY


    So the penultimate month of the season is over with and we go into the final month pretty much guaranteed Champions League football for next season and also a chance to win the Europa League.

    In the league we are probably going to finish 4th which I am happy with and in Europe we are in the semis and will play Bayer Leverkusen.

    A special mention has to go to Benat who won my player of the month award for the 2nd month in a row. He has been immense this month with 3 goals and 3 MOM awards.

    Also this month I signed a new contract with the club and and have gone on a coaching course to improve my meagre coaching abilities!

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    BENAT

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-benat_-overview-profile-2.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-3.png


  19. Top 4 all but secure which will be nice. Have a feeling breaking into that top 3 is gonna be tougher than ever before so long as Atletico have Griezemann

  20. decent month there ..nearly messed up against shaktar ..glad you got through...gonna be a tricky against leverkusen

  21. What's the final run in like? 2 players you got in potential look the part

  22. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    MAY

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 0
    Espanyol 0

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue*, Etxeita, Elustondo, Boveda, Eraso, Rico, Aranburu (Oteo), Jose Maria (Seguin), Sabin, Villalibre (Vicente)

    We knew before we kicked off that Champions League qualification was secured so I rested my team for the upcoming European tie. 15y/o Jose Maria made his debut here and beat the record for the youngest player in La Liga that was held since 1939!

    --
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-aritz-aduriz_-overview-profile.png
    v
    UEFA Europa League Semi-Final 1st Leg
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Aduriz 45, 86, Williams 62)
    Bayer Leverkusen 2 (Hernandez 61, Volland 81)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Etxeita), Benat, Susaeta*, Williams, Muniain, Aduriz

    Half way there although the 2 away goals are a worry but hopefully we can see it out.

    --

    v
    Granada 3 (Foulquier 43, Victor Alvarez 45, Pereira 83)
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Villalibre 36, 49, Eraso 42, 71)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita, Elustondo, Boveda, Eraso*, Rico (Nolaskoain), De Marcos (Aranburu), Williams (Jose Maria), Sabin, Villalibre

    Way to go back ups!!!! I had to start with De Marcos and Williams and unfortunately Williams picked up a knock and will miss the rest of the season I think. Eraso scoring 2 goals is pretty weird.

    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League Sem-Final 2nd Leg
    Bayer Leverkusen 0
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Benat 64, Aduriz 90)
    (Agg: 2-5)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Eraso), Benat*, Susaeta, De Marcos (Sabin), Muniain, Aduriz

    Into the final we go!!! I am not sure how may direct free-kicks that Benat has scored this season but he got another one here. Leverkusen barely threatened in truth.

    --

    v
    Sevilla 3 (Kranevitter 33, Pareja 74, Vietto 80)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Aduriz 26)


    Lineup
    - Kepa, De Marcos (Lekue), San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta (Aranburu), Jose Maria, Muniain, Aduriz

    Sevilla appointed Roberto Mancini as their new manager earlier in the season and apparently he wanted to get one over me here - which he duly did but I aint too bothered as the league games are meaningless now.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 0
    Real Madrid 2 (Benzema 26, 66)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita, Elustondo, Boveda, Eraso, Rico, Aranburu, Jose Maria, Sabin (Seguin), Villalibre (Vicente)

    We went into this game knowing that Real needed to win to win the title and unfortunately for Barcelona I needed to rest my players for the final. Even before the game Iturraspe got injured and will miss the showpiece occasion while Aritz Aduriz announced his imminent retirement. As for the game itself- we missed a few early chances and then Real stepped up a gear and made us pay.

    --

    v
    UEFA Europa League Final
    Manchester United 0
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Muniain 53, Aduriz 60, Williams 77)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte*, Balenziaga, Raul Garcia, Benat, Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Aduriz

    WOOOOOO!!!!!

    We win the Europa League with a fantastic performance against Man Utd. We soaked up their pressure and in the 2nd half struck on the counter 3 times. I was delighted that Aduriz scored in this showpiece occasion with it also being his final game of his career
    .

    --

    SUMMARY


    This month was all about the Europa League as we used the league matches to rest my first team and give some youngsters some game time and the youngsters did not too bad in fact our worst league performance was when we played a strong side!

    In the Europa League we were excellent and my decision to rest players for these games worked a treat. We beat Bayer Leverkusen home and away and also trounced Manchester United in the final to claim my first piece of silverware.

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    ARITZ ADURIZ
    Click image for larger version

Name:	Aritz Aduriz_ Overview Profile.png
Views:	222
Size:	278.7 KB
ID:	1110662

    end of season post to follow....

    Last edited by KLIPPYBO; 02/04/2017 at 11:17 AM.
    Death Ball and jaydon111 like this.

  23. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    SEASON REVIEW

    I am naturally delighted with how my first season went. To finish comfortably in the league in 4th position, a run to the semis of the Copa del Rey and to win the Europa League was immense.

    In the league we were in the title race up until about March when we eventually faded away but the fact that we lasted that long is encouraging. We failed to get anything against the big 3 however and that is definitely something that we need to improve on next season.

    In the cup we did well to get to the semis but Real Madrid were too strong for us as they went on to win the cup. However in the Europa League we were great as we sailed through our group, comfortably beat 2 Belgian sides before a large first leg win was enough for us to defeat Shakhtar Donetsk.

    In the semis we defeated Bayer Leverkusen both home and away and then in the final we thrashed Manchester United 3-0 to claim the trophy - hopefully the first of many.

    --

    FINAL LEAGUE TABLE
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-3.png

    --

    SQUAD

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-athletic-bilbao_-players-players.png

    Overall I am happy with most of the performances. Benat was a class apart, Kepa developed nicely, my attacking 4 were great while San Jose and Laporte were solid. Balenziaga was a great surprise and he was very consistent.

    With regards to my youngsters that I needed to develop Asier Villalibre did ok but a long term injury stunted it a bit. Inigo Vicente got more appearances than I expected while Yeray being unavailable for the 2nd half of the season was a major blow. However with the intake came Aranburu and I also managed to get Jose Maria in and they look like they could be great.

    --

    MY PLAYER OF THE SEASON
    BENAT

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-benat_-overview-profile-3.png

    --

    MY YOUNG PLAYER OF THE SEASON
    KEPA
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-kepa_-overview-profile.png

    --

    B TEAM

    My B team did great as they finished 3rd in the league and then won promotion through the playoffs including two 3-1 victories over Barcelona B. Iker Hernandez was the top scorer while Seguin, Oteo, Bilbao, Remiro and Saborit did well as did the veteran Andoni Iraola who played the 1st half of the season before retiring.

    So next season the B team will be playing in the 2nd tier!

    --

    U19s

    Won the league winning every game apart from 3 games where they drew. They scored 117 goals with Vicente scoring over 30. My signing from Zaragoza, Millan, scored 24 while Nolaskoain scored 19.

    In the cup they got to the semis where they lost out to Atletico Madrid.




    Sam91 likes this.

  24. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    PRE-SEASON AND AUGUST


    So season number 2 is upon us and hopefully we can maintain the positive momentum that we had in the first season. My aims for the league is to finish in the top 4 and get a victory against one of the top 3. Another decent cup run would be nice and in the Champions League I would like to make it out of the group stage.

    My squad arguably is weaker than last season. I have brought one player in and a few have returned from loan spells but I have also sold a couple, relegated one or two and of course my main striker Aritz Aduriz has retired.

    So who will replace Aduriz? I could put my faith in Asier Villalibre but at 19y/o it may come too soon for him. My alternative is Inaki Williams and for that I will need to pick another AMC. Hmmmm.

    --

    PLAYERS IN


    I have brought one player in and that was Mikel Merino from Borussia Dortmund. I was quoted £12m for him but then he was listed for loan so I signed him on a 2 year loan with a £7.5m buyout clause and paid it immediately!!!
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-mikel-merino_-overview-profile.png

    Merino at 21y/o will be a key player and a linchpin in the side for several years but for now he will be competing with Iturraspe.

    I also brought in a couple of regens for a pittance but I did fail to get one from Sporting Gijon for £2,5m as he joined Barcelona.
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-antonio-luis_-overview-profile.pngSuccess Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-joaquin-paz_-overview-profile.pngSuccess Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-francisco_-overview-profile.png

    Unai Lopez, Oscar Gil, Markel Etxeberria, Iago Herrerin, Urtzi Iriondo and Mikel Vesga arrived back on loan and will be in the B squad to help them in the Segunda Division. Ager Aketxe came back and will be with the first team.

    --

    TRANSFERS OUT

    As you know Aduriz retired but I also sold a few backups. Kike Sola came back from loan and left for Tenerife for £475,000. Gorka Elustondo left for Alaves for £925,000, Iago Herrerin went to Almeria for £300,000 and Enric Saborit left for Leganes for £450,000. Finally Mikel Rico left to join Sporting Gijon for an initial £93,000 - big bucks lol.

    I also released something like 50 players!

    --

    V
    UEFA European Super Cup
    Bayern Munich 0
    Athletic Bilbao 0

    (AET - Athletic Bilbao win 3-1 on penalties)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos (Lekue), San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Merino), Benat, Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Villalibre (Aketxe)

    WOW!!!! To go head to head against the mighty Bayern Munich and hold them is a great step for us. We didn't create much but defended well and managed to get it to penalties where for once a German side was dismal.

    Aside from the match I noticed that Bayern have signed Cesar Azpilicueta - definitely a future transfer target.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Iturraspe 1, Williams 11, 26)
    Villarreal 2 (Iturbe 2, Sansone 33)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Etxeita), Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Merino), Benat, Susaeta, Williams*, Muniain, Villalibre (Sabin)

    Well that was an exciting start to the campaign. Iturraspe is under pressure for his place and he put us in front after 23secs. They levelled a minute later and then Williams took the game by the scruff of the neck and scored twice to win it for us before half an hour was up.

    --

    v
    Valencia 2 (Nani 43, Rodrigo 65)
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Laporte 16, Williams 39, Iturraspe 68, Benat 85)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Merino), Benat*, Susaeta, Williams, Muniain (Sabin), Villalibre (Aketxe)

    Brilliant. We might have thrown away a 2 goal lead but to bounce back and win so convincingly was very impressive. Iturraspe scoring again was a pleasant surprise. Valencia lost their opening game 4-1 to newly promoted Tenerife so they haven't had a good start to the campaign.


    --

    SUMMARY


    I am delighted with how this season has started. Our fixture list is pretty tough at the start of the league campaign with games against Villarreal, Valencia, Barcelona, Real Sociedad, Sevilla and Real Madrid all coming in the 1st 8 games so to win the 1st two is fantastic.

    Naturally the highlight of the month was our victory in the European Super Cup as we defeated Bayern Munich on penalties after a goalless draw. In the Champions League we are in a favourable group alongside Celtic, Manchester United and Spartak Moscow.

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    ANDER ITURRASPE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-ander-iturraspe_-overview-profile.png

  25. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    SEPTEMBER

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (San Jose 60pen)
    Barcelona 1 (Neymar 70)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose*, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Merino), Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Villalibre (Aketxe)

    Finally we avoid defeat against one of the big three at the 9th time of asking. We almost won it in the final minute when Williams hit the post.

    --

    v
    UEFA Champions League Group H
    Celtic 0
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Villalibre 40)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue (Etxeberria), Etxeita, Yeray, Boveda*, Merino (Eraso), Raul Garcia, Lopez (Oteo), Aketxe, Sabin, Villalibre

    Out came the backups here and they did a good job and I am pleased that Villalibre got his 1st goal of the season
    .

    --

    v
    Sevilla 3 (Vazquez 2, Balotelli 13, 82pen)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Susaeta 21)


    Lineup
    - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat, Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Villalibre (Raul Garcia)

    Our unbeaten start to the season comes to an end here thanks to Roberto Mancini and his favourite bad boy Mario Balotelli. Meh.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Benat 54, Villalibre 57, Merino 79)
    Tenerife 1 (Sola 18)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Merino), Benat* (Raul Garcia), Susaeta, Williams, Muniain (Sabin), Villalibre

    For a while it looked like a player I sold in the summer, Kike Sola, would be our downfall here but I kicked the team up the backside at half-time and it did the trick. Merino scored a great goal. Unfortunately Williams got injured and will be out for over a month.

    --

    v
    Almeria 1 (Perez 86)
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Susaeta 12, Raul Garcia 66, Benat 90)


    Lineup
    - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga (Boveda), Iturraspe (Merino), Benat*, Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Villalibre (Sabin)

    --

    v
    UEFA Champions League Group H
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Muniain 2, Villalibre 3)
    Spartak Moscow 1 (Fernando 69)


    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, San Jose (Etxeita), Laporte, Balenziaga (Boveda), Merino, Benat (Aketxe), Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain*, Villalibre

    We came out of the blocks on fire here and were 2 goals to the good after the 3rd minute. After that we relaxed.

    --

    SUMMARY

    We built on a great August with a decent September here. We got a great draw against Barcelona and although we lost to Sevilla we got back on track with two victories on the spin and we also won both of our game sin Europe which is great.

    Regarding how we are playing I am itching to put Mikel Merino in from the start for a run of games but Iturraspe is playing well while Villalibre is lacking in goals but has had a few assists so I am wanting him to grab a few more for us - especially with Williams out injured.

    I am contemplating calling up Aranburu to the first team as he is ripping it up at U19 level while both he and Jose Maria have come on considerably with their individual tutors. Food for thought indeed and I may act in January.

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    BENAT

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-benat_-overview-profile-4.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-4.png
    Death Ball, TheBattman and naterr like this.

  26. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    OCTOBER

    v
    Real Sociedad 1 (Podence 13)
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Muniain 14, Villalibre 41, Juanmi og48, Raul Garcia 90)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose (Etxeita), Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, Benat (Merino), Susaeta (Aketxe), Raul Garcia*, Muniain, Villalibre

    GET IN!!! Derby day victory here as we come from behind to thrash Sociedad in the Vasco derby. Raul Garcia was immense, as was Muniain and even Villalibre seemed unplayable.


    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 0
    Real Madrid 2 (Benzema 10, 67)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Aketxe), Benat (Merino), Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Villalibre (Sabin)

    Defeat here but we did have enough chances to get something out of this game but Villalibre and Muniain missed them.

    --

    v
    UEFA Champions League Group H
    Manchester United 5 (Martial 3, 23, Ibrahimovic 22, 28, 67)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Blind og54)


    Lineup
    - Kepa, De Marcos (Lekue), San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe, (Merino) Benat (Aketxe), Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Villalibre

    We were awful here as Man Utd gained revenge for the Europa League final of last season. Not happy.

    --

    v
    Alaves 1 (Deyverson 28)
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (San Jose 26pen, Raul Garcia 31, 47, 83)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Etxeita), Balenziaga, Merino, Benat (Iturraspe), Susaeta (Aketxe), Raul Garcia*, Muniain, Villalibre

    That's better!! We could have had more as San Jose also missed a penalty in the 1st half. Villalibre could have had a hat-trick himself but instead he was the provider as Raul Garcia got 3 goals.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Muniain 20, Susaeta 48, Raul Garcia 55, Villalibre 89)
    Sporting Gijon 0


    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat, Susaeta*, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Villalibre

    That's 3 times out of our last 4 league matches that we have scored 4 goals. We don't appear to be missing Aduriz or Williams lol.

    --

    v
    Getafe 0
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Villalibre 8, Merino 78)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga (Boveda), Merino*, Benat, Susaeta (Aketxe), Raul Garcia, Muniain, Villalibre (Williams)

    We keep the momentum going however both Villalibre and Susaeta had to go off in the 1st half with injuries.

    --

    SUMMARY


    This month ends us on a fine run of form having won 3 matches on the spin. We did lose to Real Madrid but arguably the highlight was the 4-1 away victory in the derby match against Real Sociedad.

    As for Europe - we got gubbed by Man Utd - I wont dwell on it lol.

    A special mention goes out to my B side in the 2nd tier as they have won 9 out of 12 games to sit top of the table!!! At the start of the season I was hoping for them to get a place comfortably in mid table but they are doing brilliantly.

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    RAUL GARCIA

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-raul-garcia_-overview-profile.png
    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages.png
    Death Ball, jaydon111 and naterr like this.

  27. Good start so far Klippy. Atletico look superb though... gonna be tough!!
    KLIPPYBO likes this.

  28. Only 5..... United were feeling generous
    KLIPPYBO likes this.

  29. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    NOVEMBER

    v
    UEFA Champions League Group H
    Athletic Bilbao 0
    Manchester United 3 (Herrera 17, Mata 41, 47)


    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat (Sabin), Aketxe, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Williams (Vicente)

    Once again Man Utd teach us a lesson. Unfortunately we didn't learn from the first lesson. Spartak Moscow beat Celtic home and away so they are level on points with us now.


    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Benat 12, San Jose 25pen)
    Granada 1 (Etxeita og9)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Etxeita (Yeray), Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat*, Aketxe, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Williams (Vicente)

    Not great but I will take the 3pts. Etxeita's own goal was farcical as he scored with a sliding tackle from 18 yards!

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Raul Garcia 23, 47, Williams 43, Sabin 90)
    Malaga 2 (Hervias 25, Ben Yedder 29)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Yeray), Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia*, Muniain (Sabin), Williams

    This makes it 5 wins in a row in the league. We actually had a goal disallowed through Mikel San Jose's handball before we took the lead and then we threw it away before levelling just before the break. Raul Garcia scored to put us in front and then it was all Malaga as they missed several sitters before Sabin struck in injury time.

    --

    v
    UEFA Champions League Group H
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Hubschman og52, Nolaskoain 85, 90)
    Celtic 0

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita, Yeray (Gil), Boveda, Iturraspe (Eraso), Raul Garcia, Oteo (Nolaskoain*), Aketxe, Sabin, Vicente

    It isn't often that a 2nd half substitute comes on to win the man of the match award but Peru Nolaskoain did it here as he came on with 25min to go and scored twice. We just need a draw away to Spartak Moscow to qualify now.

    --

    v
    Espanyol 0
    Athletic Bilbao 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat (Aketxe), Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Williams (Sabin)

    What a bore this game was. We barely threatened Espanyol and fortunately we didn't concede one ourselves.

    --

    v
    Copa del Rey 4th Round 1st Leg
    Cacereno 0
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Sabin 6, 29, Jose Maria 66)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita, Yeray, Boveda, Iturraspe (Vesga), Nolaskoain (Eraso), Aranburu, Jose Maria, Aketxe (Seguin), Sabin*

    Due to the U19S involvement in the Euro Youth League the likes of Aranburu and Jose Maria have been unavailable for me thus far so they came straight in here. 15y/o Jose Maria got off the mark for the club to become our youngest ever scorer while once again Nolaskoain impressed with 2 assists.

    --

    SUMMARY

    A decent month all told. We, for now at least, are right in the mix for the league championship so we shall see how we get on in that front in the future. In Europe Man Utd thumped us again but we have one foot in the knockout stages anyway.

    Having brought in some youngsters towards the end of the month I am impressed with how they both performed and are developing. Aranburu will be a beast for sure and so will Jose Maria considering he is a year younger. It was however Peru Noskaloain who impressed me most as despite only playing 90min over 2 appearances he scored 2 and assisted 2 to catch the eye.

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    PERU NOLASKOAIN

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-peru-nolaskoain_-overview-profile.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-2.png

    TheBattman likes this.

  30. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    DECEMBER

    v
    Las Palmas 1 (Halilovic 45)
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Williams 3, Muniain 80, 82)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat, Susaeta (Aketxe), Raul Garcia (Sabin), Muniain*, Williams (Villalibre)

    We got an early lead here but then Williams went off injured and they equalised. The game was heading for a draw when I took off Raul Garcia for Sabin and moved Muniain to AMC and it worked a treat as Villalibre set up both of Muniains goals and he hit the post in stoppage time to deny him a hat-trick.

    --

    v
    UEFA Champions League Group H
    Spartak Moscow 1 (Glushakov 68)
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (San Jose 15pen, Zobnin og25, Susaeta 31)

    Lineup
    - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Yeray), Balenziaga*, Merino, Benat (Sabin), Susaeta (Aketxe), Raul Garcia, Muniain, Villalibre

    As long as we avoided defeat we qualified and in the freezing snow of Moscow my players did a great job and won convincingly although Spartak gave us a helping hand with the 1st two goals.

    -

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Muniain 56, Sabin 90)
    Atletico Madrid 1 (Gameiro 14)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Yeray), Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat (Sabin), Williams, Raul Garcia, Muniain*, Villalibre

    A win against the big 3!!!! However the scoreline doesn't tell the full story as they had a man sent-off in the 2nd minute and also another player sent-off midway through the 2nd half. I would have been severely pissed off we couldn't beat 9 men and fortunately Sabin came off the bench to score the winner in stoppage time.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Benat 39, Susaeta 54, Villalibre 81)
    Celta Vigo 1 (Hernandez 69)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat* (Raul Garcia), Susaeta (Aketxe), Williams, Muniain, Villalibre

    This win puts us top - for overnight at least lol. It also pretty much secures a top 4 finish as Celta are 13pts behind us in 5th.

    --

    v
    Copa del Rey 4th Round 2nd Leg
    Athletic Bilbao (Sabin 14, Nolaskoain 53, Yeray 69, Seguin 90)
    Cacereno
    (Agg: 7-0)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita, Yeray, Boveda, Iturraspe (Vesga), Nolaskoain*, Lopez (Oteo), Jose Maria, Aketxe (Seguin), Sabin

    Aranburu picked up a knock so couldn't play unfortunately but
    Nolaskoain came in and starred again. He is impressing for the B team in the 2nd tier too.

    --

    v
    Real Betis 1 (Pezzella 77)
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Petros og8, Donk og17, Sanabria og52)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Etxeita (Yeray), Balenziaga, Merino, Benat (Nolaskoain), Susaeta*, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Williams (Sabin)

    Don't know what to say here - never had 3 own goals to my favour in the same game before!

    --

    SUMMARY

    This was a great month both on and off the pitch with just one sour note. On the pitch everything was spot on as we won every match including a victory over Atletico Madrid which sees us ending the calendar year level top of the league.

    In the cup we easily beat Cacereno however in the next round we are up against Atletico Madrid while in the Champions League we will play Italian champions Napoli.

    As for the sour note - it appears that Asier Villalibre is injury prone. Last season he was out for 3 months and already this season he missed a month and now he is out for another 3-4 months which is a crying shame as he has enormous potential but he just cant keep fit.

    Off the pitch Benat, Villalibre and San Jose signed new contracts while the youth facilities are getting improved and we are also expanding the stadium by 7,000 at a cost of £42m which will take the capacity up to 60,000.

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    IKER MUNIAIN

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-iker-muniain_-overview-profile.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-3.png

  31. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    JANUARY



    v
    Copa del Rey 5th Round 1st Leg
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Muniain 23)
    Atletico Madrid 2 (Griezmann 28, Gamiero 30)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos (Lekue), San Jose, Etxeita (Yeray), Balenziaga, Merino (Eraso), Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain*, Williams

    If this was the away leg then I would be happy but it wasn't and now we really face an uphill task to qualify for the next round.


    --

    v
    Osasuna 0
    Athletic Bilbao 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Etxeita, Balenziaga*, Merino (Eraso), Benat (Iturraspe), Susaeta (Lekue), Raul Garcia, Muniain, Williams

    This local derby was played in terrible conditions which was befitting of such a terrible game. It extends our unbeaten run in the league to 11 games though.

    --

    v
    Copa del Rey 5th Round 2nd Leg
    Atletico Madrid 3 (Griezmann 9, 86, Gaitan 80)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (San Jose 59pen)
    (Agg: 5-2)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Eraso), Benat, Susaeta (Aketxe), Raul Garcia, Muniain, Williams (Sabin)

    We gave it a shot and did ok but in the end got punished for pushing players forward chasing the leveller.

    --

    v
    Villarreal 0
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Raul Garcia 44, Muniain 55, Susaeta 82)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Yeray), Balenziaga, Merino, Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia (Aketxe), Muniain, Williams*

    A fantastic victory over a struggling Villarreal side who just sold their best CB to a Chinese team. Williams may be struggling for goals up front but he got 2 assists here.

    --

    v
    Barcelona 0
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Williams 45)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose*, Laporte, Balenziaga (Lekue), Merino, Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia (Iturraspe), Muniain (Sabin), Williams

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!

    What a victory this is. They battered us in the first half and Kepa even saved an early Messi penalty but we held on somehow and took the lead against the run of play when Williams latched onto a long through ball and rounded the keeper to score.

    In the 2nd half I decided to set the team up to counter and with 30min left I changed my formation for the first time during a game as I withdrew my AMC and brought on Iturraspe to sit in front of the back four and we managed to hold on.

    13 games unbeaten in the league now and clear at the top........


    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Williams 12, 90)
    Valencia 2 (Parejo 14, Piatti 33)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Williams*

    After the highs of the last match it was important to maintain momentum here and we were struggling for large parts after we took the lead and even when Parejo got sent-off for them in the 2nd half we couldn't muster a chance until right at the end when Williams netted his 2nd to grab a point.

    --

    SUMMARY

    What a month this was. We end the month level top with Real Madrid and 2pts clear of Barcelona and Atletico. Undoubtedly the highlight was the away victory over Barcelona which was amazing. Sure we lost in the cup to Atletico home and away but I am not overly bothered about that.

    Transfers wise the board increased my budget to £11m and there was 1 player I was monitoring but decided to stick with what I have. Nobody left permanently but I did loan a few youth and B team players out. Speaking of the B team they are currently in 2nd place in the 2nd tier!!!


    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    INAKI WILLIAMS
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-inaki-williams_-overview-profile.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-4.png
    TheBattman and Dokara like this.

  32. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    FEBRUARY

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Muniain 2, 28, 72, Sabin 49)
    Sevilla 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe (Eraso), Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia (Jose Maria), Muniain*, Sabin

    Fuck it - I am going to say it - even jinx it considering we have Real Madrid away this month but........ we do look like a side that can be champions. Even without my first 2 strikers and Merino we thrashed Sevilla here with Susaeta setting up all the goals!!

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Susaeta 19, Williams 44)
    Almeria 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Yeray), Balenziaga, Merino, Benat, Susaeta*, Raul Garcia (Sabin), Muniain, Williams

    Another terrific performance from Susaeta here - his goal was amazing as he volleyed in from 20 yards.

    --

    v
    Tenerife 0
    Athletic Bilbao 5 (Williams 3, 13, Susaeta 49, 59, Merino 52)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Francisco), Raul Garcia, Susaeta*, Muniain, Sabin, Williams

    Markel Susaeta could score 20 own goals in the next 3 games and he would still get the player of the month award - what a goal he scored as once again he volleyed in from the edge of the area for his 1st. Muniain got 3 assists and 16y/o Francisco made his debut.

    --

    v
    UEFA Champions League 1st Round 1st Leg
    Athletic Bilbao 0
    Napoli 0

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, San Jose*, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat (Aketxe), Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Williams (Sabin)

    Not sure how to assess this match - should this be a game that we should be winning or not? Anyway at least we didn't concede the away goal.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Sabin 71, Laporte 75, Williams 90)
    Real Sociedad 1 (William 25pen)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose (Etxeita), Laporte*, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat (Iturraspe), Susaeta, Raul Garcia (Sabin), Muniain, Williams

    Derby day victory!!!! We were poor for the first hour but now I have to blow my own trumpet as my first sub, Sabin levelled and then moments after taking off Benat we got a free kick and Aymeric Laporte struck it in from over 30 yards - why he took it I don't know. It was plain sailing from then on.

    --

    v
    Real Madrid 3 (Morata 63, 79, Isco 83)
    Athletic Bilbao 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat (Iturraspe), Susaeta, Aketxe (Nolaskoain), Muniain, Williams

    So our long 18 game unbeaten run in the league ends and deservedly so as we were awful here and didn't get a sniff. Hopefully my players confidence isn't dented too much.

    --

    SUMMARY


    What an end to the season we have in store here! If the month ended before we played Real Madrid I would have been boasting of a 4pt lead at the top but as it is we are clear at the top but it is very tight.

    We have been superb tbh and I am so excited to see how we finish as if we carry on as we are going who knows? I should point out that when I post I type my updates game by game so I don't know whats coming next so I am not dropping cliffhangers when I know what the outcome is - I honestly don't know!!!

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    MARKEL SUSAETA

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-markel-susaeta_-overview-profile.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-5.png
    Death Ball and TheBattman like this.

  33. loving this
    KLIPPYBO likes this.

  34. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    MARCH


    v
    Sporting Gijon 0
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Laporte 15, Benat 83)

    Lineup
    - Iraizoz, De Marcos, San Jose (Etxeita), Laporte*, Balenziaga (Lekue), Iturraspe, Benat, Susaeta (Nolaskoain), Aketxe, Muniain, Williams

    Back to winning ways. San Jose missed an early penalty and they had a man sent-off in the 2nd half. Iraizoz made his 1st appearance of the season here.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Iturraspe 12)
    Alaves 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Iturraspe*, Nolaskoain, Susaeta, Aketxe, Muniain, Williams (Sabin)

    --

    v
    UEFA Champions League 1st Round 2nd Leg
    Napoli 3 (Insigne 5, 59, Callejon 20)
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Aketxe 22, Muniain 67, Benat 74)
    (Agg: 3-3, Athletic Bilbao win on away goals)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga (Lekue), Iturraspe (Eraso), Benat, Susaeta (Nolaskoain), Aketxe, Muniain, Williams

    What a match!!! We started terribly and quickly went 2 down but Aketxe pulled one back before the break. When they went 3-1 up I thought it was all over but firstly Muniain pulled one back and then they had a man sent-off and moments later Benat scored from a free kick to send us through.


    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (San Jose 25pen, Susaeta 27, Benat 29, Muniain 34)
    Getafe 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Eraso, Benat*, Susaeta, Aketxe (Nolaskoain), Muniain, Williams

    Very impressive. We destroyed Getafe in a crazy 10 minute spell where we scored 4 times.


    --

    v
    Granada 0
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Williams 39, San Jose 42pen, 77pen)

    Lineup
    - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose*, Etxeita (Yeray), Balenziaga, Merino (Eraso), Benat, Susaeta, Aketxe (Villalibre), Muniain, Williams

    Granada handed us the match here as we scored our 1st when Williams latched on to a short pass back and the 2nd came from the spot after they had a man sent-off and the 3rd was a penalty too - thank you very much!! Villalibre made his welcome return from injury here.

    --

    SUMMARY


    Another fantastic month as we won all of our league games and managed to get a score draw away to Napoli to go through in the Champions League. In the league we are on fire as we aren't conceding many and we seem to be adding doses of lady luck alongside skill and ability.

    Can we do it? We sit 1pt clear of Barcelona and have 2 tricky away fixtures against Malaga and Atletico Madrid to play so who knows. It will be close for sure!!!

    In the Champions League we will play Bayern Munich who we defeated on penalties earlier this season.

    And now for the youth intake - and I am delighted with it!!! We got 3 standout players and a few other decent ones too. The top 3 are a left back (thank god), a striker and a left winger.....
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-ekaitz-goni_-overview-profile.pngSuccess Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-daniel-eraso_-overview-profile.pngSuccess Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-cesar-ruiz_-overview-profile.png

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    BENAT
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-benat_-overview-profile.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-6.png
    Last edited by KLIPPYBO; 07/04/2017 at 05:01 PM.
    Death Ball likes this.

  35. So tight at the top mate. Amazing achievement if you get the title this early!!

  36. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend
    Quote Originally Posted by Sam91 View Post
    So tight at the top mate. Amazing achievement if you get the title this early!!
    Just about to start April - in Spain its decided on the head to head record - would finish above Barca, below Real and it depends on our return game against Atletico as I won the first one 2-1

  37. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    APRIL

    v
    UEFA Champions League Quarter Final 1st Leg
    Bayern Munich 4 (Muller 21, Lewandowski 45, 51, 62)
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Raul Garcia 20, San Jose 86pen)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos (Lekue), San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat, Susaeta (Aketxe), Raul Garcia, Muniain, Williams (Villalibre)

    For 1 whole minute everything was fantastic - after that it all went downhill although Mikel San Jose's late penalty may just give us hope.

    --

    v
    Malaga 1 (Jony 32)
    Athletic Bilbao 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia (Sabin), Muniain, Williams (Villalibre)

    It was bound to come - so many games this season we have got a major slice of luck but here it wasn't to be as we hit the woodwork 3 times and had a shot cleared off the line.

    --

    v
    UEFA Champions League Quarter Final 2nd Leg
    Athletic Bilbao 0
    Bayern Munich 2 (Laporte og1, Muller 34)
    (Agg: 2-6)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Villalibre (Sabin)

    An own goal in the 1st minute is not what you need when you are chasing a 2 goal deficit. 3 defeats in a row now.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Merino 17, Laporte 38, Muniain 44)
    Espanyol 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte*, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat, Susaeta, Williams (Raul Garcia), Muniain, Villalibre

    Back to winning ways with a comfortable victory here. Even better was that Barcelona lost at home to Atletico Madrid!!!

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (San Jose 23, 28, Williams 61, Benat 71)
    Las Palmas 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose*, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat, Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Villalibre (Sabin)

    Another game, another win, 1 match closer to the title!!!! 4 games to go now.

    --

    v
    Atletico Madrid 3 (Vietto 27, 39, 59)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Villalibre 30)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Etxeita), Balenziaga, Merino, Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta (Aketxe), Williams, Muniain, Villalibre

    And now it is out of our hands. Atletico hammered us here and even though they had a man sent-off in the 2nd half we couldn't claw back a 2 goal deficit.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Benat 89)
    Real Betis 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat*, Susaeta (Aketxe), Williams, Muniain (Sabin), Villalibre (Raul Garcia)

    We kick-off 1 day before everyone else here so Benat's last minute winner could prove to be very, very, very important.

    --

    SUMMARY

    We go into the final month of the season still in the midst of the title race. With just 2 games to play (Celta Vigo and Osasuna) we are 2pts behind Barcelona who do have a tricky fixture away to Valencia to negotiate. Can we do it? Unlikely but we wont give up!!!

    In the Champions League we were knocked out by the holders Bayern Munich and overall I am content with our campaign in Europe although the heavy defeats by Man Utd weren't nice!

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    MIKEL SAN JOSE
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-mikel-san-jose_-overview-profile.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-7.png

  38. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    MAY

    v
    Celta Vigo 1 (Keko 79)
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Muniain 8, Merino 14)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino*, Benat (Raul Garcia), Susaeta, Williams, Muniain, Villalibre (Etxeita)

    We got off to a great start as we were 2up in 15min but then San Jose got sent-off, the first dismissal for one of my players I think, and it was a case of holding on from then on.

    As for Barcelona away to Valencia? They won 4-1 so just need to beat Almeria at home to clinch the title
    .

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 0
    Osasuna 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos (Lekue), Etxeita (Yeray), Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat, Susaeta (Aranburu), Williams, Muniain, Villalibre

    What a dismal way to end the season - we didn't even threaten Osasuna here and completely bottled it. Well I say that but Barcelona thrashed Almeria 7-1 so even if we won we wouldn't have clinched the title.

    --

    SUMMARY

    This was just a short post to end the league season and unfortunately for us it was to end in disappointment as we finish runners-up to Barcelona by 4pts. We managed to beat Celta Vigo but could only draw in the derby against Osasuna 0-0 for the 2nd time in the season.

    Meh!!!!

    END OF SEASON POST TO FOLLOW

    Dokara likes this.

  39. nice one finishing 2nd..hopefully you kick on and win it next year
    KLIPPYBO likes this.

  40. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    END OF SEASON POST


    I suppose if you offered me at the start of the season what we achieved I would have snapped your hands off but somehow there is a feeling of despondency around me. We did win the European Super Cup and progressed massively in the league over last season and even had a decent run in Europe as we reached the Champions League quarter finals although in the domestic cup we got knocked out fairly early.

    The cup competitions I have glossed over as there is not much else to say as it was the league campaign that was exciting. We had a horrible run of fixtures at the start and did well and then put in an 18 game run which put us tip of the league which included victories over Barcelona and Atletico Madrid. For the last 3 months of the season we were top pretty much most of the time but with a couple of games to go Barcelona leapfrogged us and held on.

    I have to be honest and say we massively over-achieved. With the loss of Aduriz due to retirement and with his replacement Villalibre being both injury prone and out of form to maintain a title challenge to the last day was incredible.

    Aims for next season? Win a trophy! I want to continue to win a trophy every year and this time it will be tough as I will only be in the major 3 trophies unless we fuck up in the Champions League.

    --

    FINAL LEAGUE TABLE
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-8.png

    --

    FIRST TEAM SQUAD
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-athletic-bilbao_-players-players.png

    Without Aduriz I needed Villalibre to step up but unfortunately he didn't quite and the goals were shared around with 6 players getting into double figures. Nobody really stood out in the 1st XI although Markel Susaetas's 18 assists is noteworthy.

    --

    MY PLAYER OF THE SEASON
    MIKEL SAN JOSE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-mikel-san-jose_-overview-profile.png

    --

    MY YOUNG PLAYER OF THE SEASON
    ASIER VILLALIBRE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-asier-villalibre_-overview-attributes.png

    If Peru Nolaskoain played more he could have got it but even though Villalibre struggled a bit he was the best. I am planning on having a few youngsters in the first team squad next season so there will be stiffer competition.

    --

    B TEAM


    With 10 wins from their 1st 14 games they were top of the 2nd tier and up until the last few months they were in the top 3 but they haven't won in 8 matches so a mid table finish looks likely with 3 games to go.

    Individually Iker Hernandez has scored plenty and Peru Nolaskoain has starred.

    --

    U19s

    Once again they won the league while being unbeaten. Aranburu and Jose Maria scored plenty but it was Millan who top scored with an amazing 57 goals which means he will be in the B team next season!

    In Europe they made it through the group stage but lost to Red Star Belgrade and Espanyol defeated them early doors in the cup.


    Last edited by KLIPPYBO; 08/04/2017 at 08:05 PM.

  41. Great story so far!!! One question.. Who do you have as HOYD?

  42. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend
    Quote Originally Posted by Saras13 View Post
    Great story so far!!! One question.. Who do you have as HOYD?
    Thought it was the one that came at the start but I appointed this guy.......

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-domingo-grau_-overview-profile.png

  43. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    SPAIN APPOINT KRIS STUART AS THEIR NEW MANAGER

    I cant quite believe it!!! I applied for every international job that became available after the World Cup which was won by France and I got offered the jobs by Chile, Senegal, Russia, Colombia and Mexico.

    I rejected all those as I got offered all of them on the same day and in my news feed I saw that Spain wanted me and I jumped at the chance. Brazil, England, Italy, Argentina and Germany haven't got back to me yet....

    My aim for Spain is global domination but the main bonus is now that every single Spanish regen will automatically appear in my player search so that now I cant miss out on anyone for my club side!

    Also as a side note they are paying me £100,000 a week which slightly eclipses my £30,000 a week salary at Athletic!

    Death Ball and naterr like this.

  44. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    PRE-SEASON


    It was an interesting pre-season for sure as I signed a couple of players, sold a couple and also promoted a couple of players into the first team fold. Obviously the main thing during pre-season was my appointment as the new manager of the national team.

    For the season ahead I want to win a trophy to keep my record going - which one I don't particularly care!!!

    --

    PLAYERS IN


    My biggest signing was Pablo Hervias who joined us from Malaga for £11.25m. He scored against us last season and impressed and is technically very gifted. He will be my backup attacking midfielder as he can play on both wings and centrally.
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-pablo-hervias_-overview-profile.png

    After that it was all regens although 2 are in the first team squad. I paid Osasuna almost £3m for Unai Galdeano and he looks as though he could be a great player in both defense and central midfield. Sevilla were given £1.6m for Alfonso Ruiz and he will be my backup striker. I am really excited about this guy as he is quick and can finish. Who knows? - If Villalibre gets injured again he may get a long run.
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-unai-galdeano_-overview-profile.pngSuccess Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-alfonso-ruiz_-overview-profile.png

    All the others were bought for small fees and will be in the U19 team.
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-ernesto-cano_-overview-profile.pngSuccess Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-jose-antonio_-overview-profile.pngSuccess Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-jose-juan_-overview-profile.png

    --

    PLAYERS OUT

    Eneko Boveda was sold to Real Betis for £1.9m, Sabin went to Getafe for £1.3m and Javier Eraso went to Las Palmas for £750,000 as they were blocking the progress of some youngsters into the first team. A couple of B team players were sold and veteran Gorka Iraizoz retired.

    --

    FIRST TEAM SQUAD


    Along with the aforementioned new recruits into the squad I have promoted 3 other players into the first team. Alejandro Aranburu comes up from the U19s to cover for the AMR position. Alex Remiro gets promoted from the B team to be my new backup keeper and 16y/o Ekaitz Goni is also called up from the U19s to be cover for Mikel Balenziaga at left back - Goni came in last seasons youth intake so it is swift progress for him!

    --

    We also had one game in August.............

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Merino 37, Balenziaga 45, Benat 56)
    Alaves 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga*, Merino, Benat, Hervias (Aranburu), Raul Garcia, Muniain, Villalibre (Ruiz)

    We went into this game with a few injuries - Susaeta crocked himself in his own testimonial! - but we strolled the game really. Balenziaga scoring is definitely something to saviour.

    --

    Finally, in the Champions League we are in a tough group alongside Arsenal, Monaco and Ludogorets

    Death Ball, Dokara and naterr like this.

  45. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    SEPTEMBER

    v
    Celta Vigo 2 (Hernandez 21, Guidetti 71pen)
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Villalibre 19, 38)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat, Hervias (Aranburu), Raul Garcia (Ruiz), Muniain, Villalibre*

    A decent enough point away from home and I am pleased that Villalibre scored a couple. Hopefully he can kick on now.

    --

    v
    Levante 0
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Villalibre 14, 22, 37, Muniain 84)

    Lineup
    - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat, Hervias, Williams (Raul Garcia), Muniain, Villalibre*

    Introducing Asier Villalibre!!! Lol. 2 goals in the last match and a hat-trick here it seems at long last I have a fit and healthy young striker finally realising his potential.

    --

    v
    UEFA Champions League Group G
    Arsenal 3 (Ozil 40, Mustafi 44, Lukaku 82)
    Athletic Bilbao 0


    Lineup
    - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat, Hervias (Lekue), Williams (Aketxe), Muniain, Villalibre (Ruiz)

    I cant have any complaints here as we were rubbish and Arsenal fully deserved their victory.


    --

    v
    Granada 1 (Saponjic 38)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Villalibre 18)

    Lineup
    - Kepa, Lekue, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga (Goni), Merino, Benat (Raul Garcia), Hervias, Williams, Muniain, Villalibre

    This was a frustrating game where we should have own the game in the first half hour and then we just stopped playing and could easily have lost. 16y/o Goni made his debut.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Villalibre 71)
    Barcelona 2 (Rafinha 10, Neymar 30)

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat (Raul Garcia), Hervias, Williams, Muniain, Villalibre*

    I am raging as we had a last minute goal disallowed for some reason which would have given us a point. That being said we were poor and Kepa was immense in goal for us before we got our act together in the last 20min.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Williams 7, Villalibre 16)
    Elche 0

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat, Hervias, Williams*, Muniain, Villalibre

    --

    SUMMARY

    We haven't had the best of starts tbh. We have only won 3 out of our first 6 which is a disappointment as I feel we should have another 2 or 3pts than we have. I should single out 2 players however.......

    Firstly - Asier Villalibre - for 2 years he has had chances and been given lengthy runs in the side but it just hasn't gone his way and he has picked up injuries but this month he was immense as he scored 8 goals in 6 games and was amazing.

    Secondly - Pablo Hervias - what a fucking waste of £11.25m!!! He has been awful and has contributed nothing. Susaeta will be welcomed back with open arms shortly.

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    ASIER VILLALIBRE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-asier-villalibre_-overview-profile.png

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages.png

    --


    SPAIN

    Nations League Division A Group 3

    v
    England 2 (Bellerin og37, Lallana 43)
    Spain 0

    Lineup - De Gea, Bellerin, Azpilicueta, Ramos (Bartra), Grimaldo (Marcos Alonso), Koke, Thiago, Sandro, Isco, Asensio, Morata (Williams)

    I don't have a Scooby about this Nations League malarkey - is it the qualifiers for the Euros? Anywho I also don't have a clue about my best XI or even squad yet. As for the game we were very poor with the only highlight being me giving a debut to Marcos Alonso


    --

    v
    Spain 6 (Morata 2,5, 86pen, Lindelof og11, Koke 48, San Jose 53)
    Sweden 0

    Lineup
    - De Gea, Bellerin, Azpilicueta, San Jose, Grimaldo, Koke (Darder), Saul (Roberto), Sandro, Mata (Williams), Asensio, Morata*

    That's much better!!!! I gave Sergi Darder of Lyon his debut here in a much changed lineup. I put Inaki Williams on just to give him match fitness for Bilbao lol and I gave San Jose his 2nd cap and he rewarded me with a goal.


    Death Ball likes this.

  46. Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-screenshot-2017-04-09-21.13.50.png

    FIrst Year - 2016/2017

  47. Unlucky last season mate. Barca look on fire this season too... good luck!!

  48. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    OCTOBER

    v
    UEFA Champions League Group G
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Yeray 84)
    Ludogorets 0

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, Etxeita, Yeray*, Goni, Iturraspe (Galdeano), Raul Garcia (Nolaskoain), Aranburu, Aketxe, Hervias, Ruiz

    The backups came out to play and did the job but it took a while to get the goal.

    --

    v
    Getafe 0
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Villalibre 36, 44)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe) (Raul Garcia), Benat, Hervias, Williams, Muniain, Villalibre*

    Asier Villalibre's run of form continues as he has scored in every league game now apart from the 1st match. I hope the Spanish national team manager is watching lol.

    --

    v
    Real Madrid 3 (Ronaldo 4, 24, Rodriguez 72)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Williams 49)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte (Etxeita), Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat, Hervias, Williams, Muniain, Villalibre (Ruiz)

    We gave it a go here but Real showed their superiority and edged us out here and already we seem to be out of the title race. Zidane got sacked in the summer and I was linked for the job apparently although they appointed Antonio Conte.

    --

    v
    UEFA Champions League Group G
    AS Monaco 2 (Isco 22, Mandzukic 53)
    Athletic Bilbao 1 (Ruiz 73)

    Lineup
    - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat, Hervias (Susaeta), Williams, Muniain, Villalibre (Ruiz)

    Its going to be tough to qualify now as Monaco lead the group with 9pts, Arsenal have 6 and we have 3. We almost got a point as Susaeta hit the post late on.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Villalibre 18, Susaeta 90)
    Osasuna 1 (Torres 36)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos (Lekue), San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino, Benat, Hervias (Susaeta*), Williams, Muniain (Ruiz), Villalibre

    Super Susaeta!!! He came off the bench and scored the winner in stoppage time with a fantastic strike. Always nice to win a derby game.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Muniain 9, Laporte 89)
    Real Sociedad 0

    Lineup - Kepa, Lekue, San Jose*, Laporte, Balenziaga (Goni), Merino, Benat, Susaeta (Hervias), Williams, Muniain, Villalibre (Ruiz)

    Two derby victories in a row!!! We were always in control and deservedly won as we pile more misery on Sociedad.

    --

    SUMMARY

    This month had mixed fortunes. We lost to Real Madrid in the league and our defeat to Monaco gives us an uphill struggle in the Champions League but we ended the month with 2 derby victories which has me in a good mood.

    Next month will be really tough as we have some really tough fixtures both home and abroad so we shall see what happens.

    I completed my 2nd coaching course during the month and immediately got sent on another. Just now my highest manager stat is at 7!!

    --

    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    IKER MUNIAIN

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-iker-muniain_-overview-profile.png
    --

    LEAGUE TABLE

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-2.png

    --


    SPAIN
    Friendly

    v
    Spain 4 (Isco 2, Williams 10, Asensio 38, 67)
    Ecuador 2 (Caicedo 53, Bernat og81)

    Lineup - De Gea, Bellerin, Ramos, Martinez (San Jose), Grimaldo (Bernat), Busquets (Saul), Thiago (Koke), Williams, Isco (Mata), Asensio*, Morata (Diego Costa)

    Inaki Williams got off the mark for Spain here - yay.

    --

    UEFA Nations League Division A

    v
    Sweden 0
    Spain 5 (Asensio 2, Morata 11, 24, 28, 32)

    Lineup - De Gea, Bellerin, Ramos, Martinez (Bartra), Grimaldo, Busquets (Roberto), Thiago, Williams, Isco (Mata), Asensio, Morata*

    Another crushing victory over Sweden here and Morata was immense as he scored 4 goals in just over half an hour.


  49. KLIPPYBO's Avatar KLIPPYBO
    Modern Day Legend


    NOVEMBER


    v
    Malaga 2 (Musonda 41, Ben Yedder 66)
    Athletic Bilbao 4 (Williams 30, Merino 36, Villalibre 52, 65)

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino*, Benat, Susaeta (Hervias), Williams, Muniain, Villalibre

    A very good performance and a key victory considering the tough run of fixtures that we are in!

    --

    v
    UEFA Champions League Group G
    Athletic Bilbao 0
    AS Monaco 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose*, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat (Hervias), Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain, Villalibre (Ruiz)

    We really needed to win this and to be honest we should have as we created so many chances but it was not to be - need a win over Arsenal now.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Villalibre 31, Insua og48, Hervias 64)
    Villarreal 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Etxeita (Yeray), Balenziaga, Merino, Benat*, Susaeta (Hervias), Williams, Muniain, Villalibre

    FINALLY HERVIAS CONTRIBUTED!!!! It was a cracker of a goal too.

    --

    v
    Athletic Bilbao 3 (Williams 58, Villalibre 60, San Jose 74pen)
    Atletico Madrid 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, San Jose, Laporte, Balenziaga, Merino (Iturraspe), Benat, Susaeta (Hervias), Williams*, Muniain, Villalibre

    What a magnificent performance and result!!! We absolutely battered them and scored 2 fantastic goals before San Jose converted a penalty.

    --

    v
    UEFA Champions League Group G
    Athletic Bilbao 2 (Muniain 10, Raul Garcia 21)
    Arsenal 0

    Lineup - Kepa, De Marcos, Etxeita, Yeray, Balenziaga (Goni), Iturraspe (Galdeano), Benat, Susaeta, Raul Garcia, Muniain*, Villalibre (Ruiz)

    WOOOO!!!! Before the game I thought our chances of qualifying were gone so I gave a few players a rest and we only went and won with another great performance. Now we need to beat Ludogorets and hope that Monaco beat Arsenal.

    --

    SUMMARY

    I am buzzing over how this month went. We won all our games apart from one and even then we should have won that. We battered just about every side we came up against and got notable victories against Arsenal and Atletico Madrid - hell, even Pablo Hervias did something of note.

    I also signed a new contract with the club with a £10k wage rise so I now earn £40k per week with Athletic and £100k with Spain.

    --
    PLAYER OF THE MONTH
    KEPA

    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-kepa_-overview-profile.png

    So many players could have got it but a run of 4 clean sheets gives it to Kepa.

    --

    LEAGUE TABLE
    Success Comes From Within - An Athletic Bilbao Story-liga-santander_-overview-stages-3.png

    --


    SPAIN

    UEFA Nations League Group A Division 3

    v
    Spain 1 (Williams 37)
    England 1 (Alli 24)

    Lineup - De Gea, Bellerin, Martinez, Ramos, Grimaldo, Koke (Roberto), Thiago (Saul), Williams, Isco (Mata), Asensio, Morata

    We played well enough to win but we couldn't manage to get the winning goal. 2nd place it is - whatever that means lol

    --

    Friendly

    v
    Spain 2 (Bernat 36, Asensio 40)
    USA 1 (Altidore 31pen)

    Lineup - De Gea, Azpilicueta (Bellerin), Martinez, San Jose, Bernat* (Grimaldo), Busquets (Koke), Herrera, Sandro (Williams), Mata, Asensio (Merino), Morata (Diego Costa)

    Thiago and Isco got injured in the last match so I called up Ander Herrera and my own Mikel Merino and they got their international debuts. A lot of players were unfit so I changed it about a bit.



    Death Ball likes this.

  50. Really enjoy your Bilbao stories. I've got a problem I hope you can help with. I've recently started my own game with Bilbao and playing a similar tactic but struggling to score goals which you don't seem to. What kind of football do you try to play with Bilbao? I've gone for a slow possession based game but I'm not sure it suits the attacking players.

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