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Iker Muniain not even in the Cup

Iker Muniain not even in the Cup

Jeickson Sulbaran

December 5, 2023 | 3:25 pm

In the Athletic Club de Bilbao, preparation for the next meeting of the Copa del Rey is marked by notable absences, including that of its emblematic player, Iker Muniain. This situation poses significant challenges for the red and white team, which will face Cayón in the second round of the competition in El Sardinero. Muniain's absence, added to that of other key players, forces coach Ernesto Valverde to reconsider his strategy and lineup.

Notable absences in the team

Today's training session prior to the Cup match has revealed the absence of several important players, including Óscar de Marcos and Iker Muniain. Muniain, a central figure in the team's tactical scheme, has not been seen in the facilities, and the club has not issued any communication in this regard. These absences raise questions about the formation and tactical approach that Athletic will adopt in their next cup match.

Mikel Vesga, another crucial player, has also not participated in the session due to an injury to his hamstring muscles. This series of squad casualties means that Valverde will have to rely even more on the depth of his squad and perhaps turn to less experienced players to fill these gaps.

Preparations and tactical adjustments

Given these circumstances, Valverde has turned to the club's youth academy, calling up Bilbao Athletic players such as Jauregizar, Aingeru Olabarrieta, Hugo Rincón and Eric Gamen to train with the first team. This integration of young talent is not only crucial to completing the roster, but also offers these emerging players a valuable opportunity to gain experience and visibility.

With the absence of figures like Muniain and De Marcos, and the incorporation of players from the quarry, the Athletic technical team must make significant tactical and strategic adjustments, where Adaptability and responsiveness will be key for Athletic to face its next challenge in the Copa del Rey with confidence and effectiveness.

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