Slovan Bratislava 1 Athletic 2: Bielsa’s first winBy: Jack | September 15th, 2011
A deserved win but still room for improvement.
The first win of the season came after a good peformance in Slovakia. Athletic started the game well and took the lead after 13 minutes when Susaeta passed the ball into the net from a Muniain pull back.
Athletic continued to play well and dominate possession but Slovan still threatened and equalised 10 minutes before half time. This fired the Slovakians up and they enjoyed their brightest spell of the half before Athletic restored their lead through Muniain.
There could have been a third before half-time when Muniain won the ball off the Slovan defence, but Llorente was unable to finish past the keeper.
In the second half Athletic were less impressive and dropped off a little but did enough to hold onto the win. Javi Martínez did well in defence but you feel he would be better utilised in his preferred midfield position. It is also a shame to see the two breakthrough players of last season – Ekiza and Aurtenetxe – remain on the bench.
The result will give the team confidence though but they will need to play better when PSG come to San Mamés for the next round – who won 3-1 and top the group.
Iraizoz; Iraola, Javi Martínez, Amorebieta, De Marcos; Gurpegui; Susaeta, Muniain, Iturraspe, Gabilondo (David López, min.74); y Llorente (Toquero, min.89).