Bielsa plays down Betis result

Marcelo Bielsa has dismissed the significance of Sunday’s score-line against Real Betis but says Athletic Bilbao cannot blame absences for it.

Los Leones were beaten 5-3 in front of their own crowd on Sunday evening, but Bielsa rejected the suggestion that a line-up with Fernando Llorente, Javi Martinez and Iker Muniain was to blame.

“The defeat was deserved, but the absentees do not explain it,” reflected the Argentine after the game.

“10 minutes before the game we had a strength and our disposition was not impaired or affected. We deservedly lost and it was not because of those who played, or the absences, or the climate which might suggest why we haven’t won this game.

“We did not have our defensive power and if we had maintained a little more defensive security at 3-3 then the chances are we would have won. It is very difficult to interpret the absences of Martinez and Llorente.

“The fact is that last year there were five or six different players. But in the last 50 days of training we have tried to address this because one of the main complaints from last season was that we had no spare parts for the squad.”

Tags Bielsa