Martinez set to stay at Bilbao

After a summer of intense speculation over Javi Martinez’s future the Athletic Bilbao player now looks set to stay at San Mames.

In an interview with UEFA.com the 23-year-old midfielder declared he is only thinking about Bilbao and the club’s aims for the forthcoming season.

“We must now try to improve upon what we did last year."

“The club, players and fans were all happy with the performances but there is always the feeling that we lost in two finals,” said Martinez.

It is the clearest indication yet that the World Cup and European Championship winner could remain with Los Leones next season after interest from Barcelona and Bayern Munich.

Athletic President Josu Urrutia appeared to price the player out of a possible move over the summer after insisting on the €40m clause in the player’s contract before he would begin to talk business.

It is a ploy that seems to have deterred Martinez’s suitors and looks to have resulted in him remaining with the Basques, at least for the time being.

Martinez has just returned from representing Spain at the London Olympics and acknowledged that Luis Milla’s team had passed up a great opportunity to have gone far in the tournament.

“We were not at our best, although I thought we played well and deserved more, but we had no luck,” he lamented.

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