Valverde looking for Athletic response

Ernesto Valverde admits Athletic Bilbao have a tough task in bouncing back from their Copa del Rey elimination when they travel to Getafe on Saturday.

Los Leones were knocked out of the Copa del Rey by fellow 2015 finalists Barcelona midweek, and the Coach highlighted the importance of his side flushing out the disappointment as soon as possible to avoid their season taking an unwelcome detour.

“It’s an important game, which can give us more [than the three points], as we’ll see if we can respond in terms of morale,” he said at a Press conference.

“We’re going to try to overcome [being knocked out]. We hoped to progress, but we knew that [elimination] was a possibility.

“Bouncing back from an elimination is always difficult, and what is needed now is that we overcome it as soon as possible.

“[The second leg] was possibly one of our most demanding games of the season as it required a great physical effort and concentration from us, which kept the tie alive.

“Still, we’re happy [with our performance] and that’s the road we must follow.

“If we make the same effort [on Saturday], I have no doubt that we’ll move forward.

“Getafe have gone from less to more this season and are on a roll.

“They’ve grown in line with the season, and that’s thanks to their Coach.

“They’re a team who always cause problems, and their stadium, even though we won there in the last two seasons, is always a difficult place to play.

“They have quality in Pedro Leon, [Pablo] Sarabia, Victor [Rodriguez] and Alvaro [Vazquez], with good set-piece takers and goalscorers.

“Still, the key for us is to focus sharply on the game.”

Tags Ernesto Valverde