Primera Week 23 - 10 Feb 2013 (14.00 UK)
Athletic Bilbao 0 - 4 Espanyol
Hector Moreno 28 (E), Victor Sanchez 57 (E), Stuani 58 (E), Verdu 75 (E)
Estadio San Mames

Marcelo Bielsa hit out at the reception goalkeeper Gorka Iraizoz got, during Athletic’s 4-0 home defeat to an elated Javier Aguirre’s Espanyol.

Iraizoz received an unwelcome response to conceding twice in the space of a couple of minutes during Athletic’s heavy home reverse.

“Clearly, on some occasions, the crowd demonstrated little tolerance for our goalkeeper. Some important saves in a long campaign should quieten those complaints,” declared Bielsa after the game

“A result like this draws focus to our goalkeeper in an exaggerated way and perhaos unfairly, but that is that case.

“When you lose by 0-4 in an accessible game against an opponent who is at the same level, then it is difficult to express justifications.

“For this game, we created three times as many chances to score as Espanyol, and we did not convert any, whilst our rival got four goals.

“The result is an absolute, but the game was different for the process of what each team produced.”

The Catalans ran out convincing winners in the end at San Mames to leapfrog their opponents into 13th position in the table, leaving their Coach very happy at the whistle.

“This is an important step towards survival. In the first half we were fortunate to go in ahead, as Athletic had had the clearer chances, but we were stronger,” Aguirre summed up at the end.

“Since the storm passed at 0-1, the team strengthened. With the score in our favour we were smart to handle the pace of the game.

“This is a significant step forward towards staying up, but with 28 points no team has avoided relegation.

“Today is a good day, but tomorrow we return to work. The players are very committed, they believe it will happen and every Sunday they go out to win.

“They can win or lose, but the team is playing consistently. And their mentality is strong, which is very important.”

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Verdu missed penalty 75 (Espanyol)

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