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African All Stars

Williams affair! Athletic Bilbao's Inaki and Nico break 17 year La Liga record

10:27 PM GMT 17/09/2022
Inaki Williams, Nico Wiliams
First-half goals from Inaki Williams and Nico Williams helped Athletic Bilbao to a 3-2 victory over Rayo Vallecano at San Mames Barria.

WHAT HAPPENED? After Oscar Trejo had given the Red Sashes a shock fifth-minute lead, Inaki levelled nine minutes later for the hosts before Oihan Sancet made it 2-1 in the 28th minute. In the goal-laden first half, Nico handed Athletic a two-goal advantage after he was teed up by Yeray Alvarez 12 minutes before half-time. Radamel Falcao scored a late goal for Rayo but that could not stop the Lions from claiming all points.

THE BIGGER PICTURE: This was Rayo Vallecano’s second big test of the season and they faltered. They have now lost their third match of the 2022-23 campaign after a promising start that saw them hold Barcelona to a 0-0 draw at Camp Nou. Meanwhile, Athletic put in another statement performance which further suggested that their disastrous 1-0 home loss to Espanyol was a blip.

ALL EYES ON: Inaki was handed a starter’s role by manager Ernesto Valverde which saw him increase his outstanding tally to 239 consecutive La Liga matches since April 20, 2016. The 28-year-old has now scored four goals in total in all four games at San Mames in the Spanish elite division outings against Rayo Vallecano.

MATCH IN THREE PHOTOS:


DID YOU KNOW? Inaki and Nico are the first pair of brothers to score for the same team in the same La Liga match since Diego and Gabi Milito did it with Real Zaragoza at Camp Nou on October 1, 2005.

THE VERDICT:

With Inaki on song again, there is optimism in the air that he will come out good for the Black Stars...

WHAT NEXT FOR THE WILLIAMS BROTHERS? After the international break, Inaki and Nico are expected to feature for Athletic Bilbao when they host Almeria in a league outing on September 30. On the other end, Rayo Vallecano welcome Elche to Madrid on October 3.