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Primera División

  • February 19, 2012
  • • 15:00
  • • Estadio San Mamés, Bilbao
  • Referee: Carlos Clos Gomez
  • • Attendance: 34000
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Athletic Bilbao - Malaga Preview: Visitors must overcome terrible away record to take the points

Athletic Bilbao - Malaga Preview: Visitors must overcome terrible away record to take the points

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After a disappointing midweek loss to Lokomotiv Moscow in the Europa League, Marcelo Bielsa's men return home, looking to take down their ambitious rivals who have struggled away


PROBABLE LINEUPS

ATHLETIC BILBAO


Iraizoz
Iraola, San Jose, Amorebieta, Aurtenetxe
Iturraspe, De Marcos
Susaeta, Ander
, Muniain
Llorente

MALAGA


Caballero
Sanchez, Weligton, Mathijsen, Monreal
Toulalan, Cazorla
Fernandez, Isco, Eliseu

Rondon

Marcelo Bielsa's side enter the contest without Javi Martinez, who will be serving a suspension. In his place, Mikel San Jose looks to get the start. 

After a tough loss on Thursday against Lokomotiv Moscow, the Argentine coach may opt to rest a few players, but a full-strength side is likelier as the visitors are one of Athletic's main rivals for a higher-placed finish in the league.

For Manuel Pellegrini, Martin Demichelis is suspended while Julio Baptista and Joaquin are still recovering, the latter perhaps being fit in time for the match.

In place of the Argentine defender will likely be Weligton, who will face the tough task of containing the dangerous home attack.


DID YOU KNOW?
  • Athletic Bilbao, who currently sit in ninth place in the league with 30 points, have 34 goals this term, the fourth-highest tally in La Liga.
  • Entering the match, the home side have lost consecutive games, marking the first time they have done so since September 2011.
  • Bielsa's club will look to avenge a 1-0 defeat to Sunday's opponents suffered in that blip earlier in the season.
  • Malaga sit in seventh place in the league with 31 points despite having a negative goal differential of four.
  • While finding success at home, the team have been close to horrific on the road in league play, earning only eight points from two wins and two draws in 11 contests.
  • The club's last away win in the league was in November against Racing Santander.

Players to watch

San José

Position: Defender

Games: 0

  • 0
  • 0
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Replacing Javi Martinez will be no easy task and the centre-back will have to be at his best to contain the Malaga front line in an important clash for both sides.

Cazorla

Position: Midfielder

Games: 0

  • 0
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  • 0
The former Villarreal star is always tough to deal with. His ability with the ball will have the Athletic defenders on alert as he looks to provide and create enough chances to bag a rare triumph away from home.

Editor's Prediction

The woes on the road will likely continue for the visitors in a daunting visit to San Mames as the home side look to get back on track after two tough defeats.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Athletic Club

Málaga

Wins
2
3
0
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Athletic Club Bilbao ATH
Athletic Club Bilbao Athletic Club
Draw
Málaga Club de Fútbol MAL
Málaga Club de Fútbol Málaga
55%
34%

Top 3 Predictions

Athletic Club Bilbao ATH
2 - 1
Málaga Club de Fútbol MAL
Athletic Club Bilbao ATH
1 - 2
Málaga Club de Fútbol MAL
Athletic Club Bilbao ATH
2 - 0
Málaga Club de Fútbol MAL

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