Athletic Bilbao vs. Almeria, La Liga Clash, Preview, Predictions

Athletic Bilbao vs. Almeria Preview: Prediction, Team news, Lineups

Athletic Bilbao is geared up to recover from their defeat in the Basque derby as they gear up for a La Liga showdown against Almeria this Friday night.

The Lions have showcased a commendable start to their 2023-24 campaign, currently positioned sixth in the table with 14 points.

Conversely, Almeria has had a challenging season, positioned at the bottom of the league with merely three points from eight matches.

Match Preview

In the recent Basque derby, Athletic experienced a comprehensive defeat, conceding three goals to Real Sociedad at Reale Arena.

Ernesto Valverde’s team has still managed to put up a strong front this season, securing four wins, two draws, and two losses from eight matches, accumulating 14 points and holding the sixth position.

Athletic has gained momentum at San Mames, clinching seven points from their last nine available, defeating Real Betis and Cadiz, and drawing 2-2 with Getafe in their last home match.

Now, Athletic is focused on achieving a victory before the international break, gearing up to face Barcelona in their next La Liga fixture on October 22.

Remarkably, Athletic Bilbao has triumphed in their last four La Liga encounters against Almeria, indicating a formidable challenge for the bottom-ranked team, against whom they haven’t lost since January 2009.

The start of the season has been immensely tough for Almeria, securing a mere three points from eight matches, leaving them at the foot of the table.

Following a 5-1 defeat at Sevilla on September 26, La Union relieved Vicente Moreno of his coaching duties, temporarily placing Alberto Lasarte, Almeria B’s boss, in charge.

In Lasarte’s debut match as caretaker, Almeria managed to secure a draw against Granada, although they let a 3-0 lead slip in the second half, settling for a 3-3 draw.

Almeria’s aim is to maintain their La Liga status for successive seasons, a feat they haven’t achieved since 2015. However, the road ahead might prove long and challenging for UDA.

Athletic Bilbao La Liga Form:

W D W W D L

Almeria La Liga Form:

D L L D L D

Team News

Athletic is dealing with injuries, with Unai Gomez sidelined due to a muscular issue, and Inigo Ruiz de Galarreta and Peru Nolaskoain with thigh problems. However, they will welcome back Oihan Sancet after serving a suspension.

Nico Williams is likely to start again after a return from injury, bolstering Athletic’s lineup.

On the other hand, Almeria has four players sidelined due to injury: Lucas Robertone, Marc Pubill, Martin Svidersky, and Edgar Gonzalez.

Iddrisu Baba is expected to be recalled to the central midfield position following Gonzalez’s injury.

Sergio Arribas is anticipated to return to the starting lineup, alongside Largie Ramazani, while Adri Embarba and Leo Baptistao are likely to start from the bench.

Luis Suarez, who netted three times against Granada in the last match, will spearhead Almeria’s attack.

Predicted Starting Lineups

Athletic Bilbao:

Simon;

De Marcos, Vivian, Yeray, Yuri;

Vesga, D Garcia;

I Williams, Sancet, N Williams;

Guruzeta

Almeria:

Maximiano;

Puigmal, Kaiky, Chumi, Akieme;

Melero, Baba, Lopy;

Arribas, Suarez, Ramazani

Prediction

Almeria possesses a talented squad, but the current circumstances make it challenging to favor them.

Although they are likely to end their winless streak eventually, this match is not anticipated to be the turning point.

Athletic Bilbao is expected to secure a comfortable victory at San Mames.

Prediction: Athletic Bilbao 2-0 Almeria

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