Carlos Gurpegui has spoken of his hope that Fernando Llorente will be able to give his best to Athletic Bilbao until the end of the season.
The striker is not signing an extension to his contract that expires in the summer, with Juventus yesterday confirmed by the Basque club to be entering into talks to take him on a Bosman.
That has seemingly made clear to Gurpegui that Llorente will at least not be departing San Mames this January.
“Hopefully the saga is now over,” commented Gurpegui to reporters this week.
“It is good for everyone to have peace and that together we can now only think of Athletic, which is where we are and who we all want to get as high as possible in the League.
“Personally I do not believe that Llorente will leave in January now. The club has said so, unless a team will pay his buyout clause. In that regard we are calm.
“We know that he belongs to Athletic until that day and all I hope for is that Fernando can be at his best until June 30 and help us target as many goals as possible.”
It has been a difficult season all round for Athletic and they begin the new year with a trip to Levante and sat in 13th place in the table.
“We have a debt to the fans, our goal this year is to re-excite them and generate positive feelings again. We want people to feel proud of the team. Hopefully we can pick up the points and we will see in June if we are all happy.
“We have to try to find some consistency that we have not yet had this season and we must finish the season well. We owe it to our people and hopefully by June we will all be settled again.”