Iñaki Williams was one of the stars from Athletic club’s friendly against Liverpool on Saturday. The Lions fell 3-1 in Dublin, Ireland but the winger did score a first half goal and was electric the entire game. Following the final whistle he spoke with the media and said that, despite being a friendly, there was little nice about the meeting between the two. Both clubs are great and put in an intense performance.
“For this to be a friendly, there was little friendly about it. We are two great teams and the match was intense. It hurt us that they were comfortable dealing with out pressure. They gave us very little and have great players. They did well at taking the ball away from us and we can only congratulate them for a great game. Games like these are about learnings from mistakes and for us to be at 100% for the Europa League.
Iñaki went on to say that the team is growing a lot under new manager Kuko Ziganda. The players are confident in the system and proud to have just recently advanced to the knock-out round of the UEFA Europa League.
“With Kuko we are working very well and improving a lot. We have had a very good preseason and are very confident in ourselves. We have just qualified for the next round of the Europa League, which is the knock-out stage, and we are looking forward to getting all three points out of the first league game in a couple of weeks.”
The Lions will have about two weeks before they will travel to Athens, Greece to take on Panathinaikos in the first leg of that Europa League tie. Before then, they will face off with Deportivo Alaves next Saturday in the final of the Basque Cup. It will be the final non-official match of the summer and will likely be used as a tune-up for the important meeting in Greece on 17 August. The return leg will take place on 24 August at the San Mamés.