Athletic Club welcome Valencia to San Mames tomorrow evening for the first leg of the Copa del Rey semi-final. It’s a massive game between two of the biggest clubs in Spanish football.
Athletic entered the Copa at the last 32 due to their involvement in the Supercopa de Espana. They’ve beaten Atletico Mancha, Barcelona and Real Madrid to make it this far.
Valencia entered the competition in the first round. They’ve beaten Utrillas, Arenteiro, FC Cartagena, Atletico Baleares and Cadiz to make it up to the Basque Country tomorrow night.
Athletic are currently enjoying the better La Liga season of the two clubs. They’re eighth in the table as things stand, just a point off the Europa Conference League. Valencia are in eleventh.
The winner of the tie will face either Rayo Vallecano or Real Betis in the final of the Copa, a game that will take place at La Cartuja in Seville. Barcelona beat Athletic to win it last season.
“We’re not thinking about what will happen or if something happens that isn’t good for us,” Valencia coach Jose Bordalas said as carried by Cope. “Our mind is one the first match of the tie. We’re going to go there with ambition and a winning mentality.
“I’ve experienced very beautiful moments and I tell my players that these are unforgettable moments. We have an opportunity to play in a final and we’re going to try with all our strength to do it. We’re going to fight to be in the final.”