Marcelo Bielsa has attempted to explain Athletic Bilbao’s dismal run of form that he says sees the team losing to ‘inferior opponents’ more often than not.
Athletic head into the weekend trip to Granada two places and a single point above the relegation zone after nine rounds of action and with just four wins to their name from 18 played in all competitions.
“There have been many defeats for Athletic that have been deserved this season. It aggravates the situation because it generates disappointment,” Bielsa reflected in his pre-match Press conference this weekend.
“When the defeats have been deserved then the explanation is that we have played worse than the opponent, however, when it is not so clear then there are other reasons.
“Athletic have not learned to solve the imponderable of all football teams, that they ‘should’ be prepared.
“Playing a man down, goals from set-pieces, not playing well and still winning , and the correlation between mastery of both ends of the pitch, scoring and defending goals…
“All these contingencies we thought we had learned to resolve according to our background of a year of working together, but we cannot prove that this is so.
“It is not that we are playing well, not at all, but we have lost most of the games against opponents who have not been superior to us. The run of results is not physical, motivational or down to attitude.
“Anyone observing just a little will note that we run more than is required and that we are too eager. But we are a team that eminently as a collective relies on a few individuals and it has become evident that we have failed to achieve a collective strength in a majority of games.”