With nine games left to play in the La Liga season, this isn’t the time of year to be missing key players. Luckily for Athletic Club, the entire team is healthy and available for the first time in a very long time. The Lions host Espanyol at the San Mames on Tuesday and could climb as high as 5th place in the table with a win and some help from the other games across Spain.
After the game against Espanyol, they will travel on Friday to take on Villarreal who is a direct rival in the table. Worryingly, the Lions could be without Inaki Williams for that meeting.
The 22-year-old currently has four yellow cards to his name, meaning one more booking and he would be suspended for the next game. While it is true that wingers rarely pick up bookings, Athletic will be playing a very physical team in Espanyol on Tuesday who could force players like Inaki Williams to be even more aggressive.
Above all else, the most important thing is winning the game against Espanyol. Players and teams can’t be thinking so far into the future that they jeopardize the present. However, being without the star winger on Friday would be a big blow for Athletic. Fans will certainly be keeping a close eye on the bookings during Tuesday’s game with hopes that Inaki does not find his name written down. If the Lions are somehow able to build a strong lead early, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the Lezama graduate taken off to protect him from being carded and to give him a rest during such a busy week of football.