Athletic Club have boosted their chances of a European spot in 2022 thanks to a narrow 1-0 win away at Rayo Vallecano.
The Basque giants have enjoyed a strong start to 2022 with a Spanish Supercopa final appearance and a 3-2 Copa del Rey win over Atletico Madrid earlier this month.
However, their league form has also looked impressive in recent weeks, with seven points from three games since the turn of the year.
The visitors looked sharp in the opening stages with academy star Nico Serrano firing home his first even senior goal to deservedly edge them in front.
An absolutely brilliant finish from Nico Serrano! 💥
The 18-year-old fires Athletic Club into the lead at Vallecas with his first goal for the first team 🦁 pic.twitter.com/cDyFmKbW11
— Premier Sports (@PremierSportsTV) January 23, 2022
Marcelino’s side continued to have the better of the contest after the restart with Serrano and Inaki Williams both wasting key chances.
That lack of a cutting edge was almost punished by Rayo in the final 15, as Alvaro Garcia saw an effort cleared off the line, but the away side eventually held on.
Both sides take a break next weekend, ahead of a Copa del Rey return at the start of February, with Athletic Club hosting Real Madrid and Rayo at home to Mallorca.
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