Soccer predictions online for Elche – Ath Bilbao

Elche faces Athletic Bilbao at the Estadio Manuel Martinez Valero in another game from the first round of La Liga’s 2021/22 season. Now let’s turn our attention to this clash. Here we go with our soccer predictions online.

Elche start another year in La Liga, but with the same ambition in mind – survival. Los Franjiverdes are certainly not among the biggest clubs in the country, but they are ambitious enough to do what they successfully did last season as well. Still managed by Fran Escriba, Elche will look to use every opportunity they’ve got to win points and games. It won’t be easy, but now they have enough experience to do it.

Fran Escriba was appointed as Elche manager in February when the club was in a difficult situation because of its poor form. Escriba used his experience and successfully did the job – he saved the team from relegation.

On the summer marker Los Franjiverdes knew that they must improve the squad. And did their best according to their own finances and capabilities. The club paid 4 million euro to Boca Juniors for the midfielder Ivan Marcone. Another 2 million Elche paid to the Serie A club Torino for the striker Lucas Boye. The Argentine will have the task to improve Elche’s efficiency in attack and deliver some goals in La Liga. He played for the Spanish side last season on loan and scored 7 goals for the club.

At the same time Elche also signed Eibar’s centre-back Pedro Bigas, Girona’s left-back Johan Mojica and Karagumruk’s centre-back Enzo Roco. Fran Escriba also signed another goalkeeper as he loaned Leeds United’s Kiko Casilla until the end of the season.

Some players had to leave Elche as well. Dani Calvo, Ramon Folch, Victor Rodriguez, Miguel Cifuentes and Omenuke Mfulu all left the club as free agents. At the same time the striker Nino put an end to his playing career.

Elche suffered a defeat in their last friendly game before the new La Liga season. Los Franjiverdes faced Levante at their own Estadio Manuel Martinez Valero, but lost it with 1-2. Before this Elche made draws against Tenerife and Cartagena and recorded a win against Deportivo Alaves.

Athletic Bilbao will try to improve their performance compared to the 2020/21 season when they finished 10th in the standings. The Basques also played two Copa del Rey finals in one month, but sadly they lost both of them. Bilbao have a very experienced manager as Marcelino, so now they will try to improve and eventually qualify for Europe again.

On the market Athletic Bilbao didn’t do much so far. The Basques signed just one new player. The club offered a contract to the 24-years old right-back Alex Petxa who arrives from Athletic’s local rival Real Sociedad. This is a really low activity on the transfer market which is worrying Los Leones’ fans – they hoped for something more regarding the new signings. But there’s still some time to do it, of course.

At the same time the goalkeeper Iago Herrerin and the right winger Ibai Gomez left the club as free agents while Imanol Garcia and Inigo Vicente left Athletic on loan. They will try to gain some playing experience before eventually come back and try to win Marcelino’s trust.

There are some important players who form the core of Athletic Bilbao’s current team. The goalkeeper Unai Simon is one of the best in Spain and he was Luis Enrique’s first choice for the Euro 2020 in the summer. Meanwhile Inigo Martinez is a key figure in defense while Alex Berenguer, Raul Garcia, Unai Lopez, Iker Muniain and Inaki Williams will be crucial for Los Leones as well. Surely the head coach Marcelino will hope to keep all of them in the squad for at least one more season. He usually relies on all of them.

The 27-years old striker Inaki Williams is a player who could give even more in the upcoming season. Athletic’s number “9” scored just 6 La Liga goals last season and most certainly it’s not as impressive as we expected of him. Right now Inaki is in his peak years, so the fans will hope to see the best of him next season. He’s a skilful and technical striker, but he’s not scoring the amount of goals that is expected of him. He understands this and we guess he will work hard to change it for the better.

Meanwhile Iker Muniain is slowly turning into one of Athletic Bilbao’s legends. Although he didn’t become the global super star we all expected him to be, he’s being really consistent and productive in his time with Los Leones’ shirt. Much more experienced at the moment, Muniain is a creative midfielder who can create danger at any moment while on the pitch. He’s technical and agile, and the head coach Marcelino understands how important he is for his team’s success. At this moment Iker Muniain is in the perfect age of any player – he’s 28-years old, so maybe his best performances are still about to come.

In their biggest friendly game before the new season in La Liga Athletic Bilbao faced Liverpool at the legendary Anfield Road. The match ended with a 1-1 draw. Diogo Jota opened the score for the Reds, but Athletic managed to equalise after a goal from Alex Berenguer. It was Oihan Sancet who provided the assist. Marcelino used a typical 4-4-2 formation in this match with Inaki Williams and Oihan Sancet leading the attack. Muniain, Dani Garcia, Unai Vencedor and Alex Berenguer operated in midfield.

That’s our soccer predictions online for the La Liga clash between Elche and Athletic Bilbao at the Estadio Manuel Martinez Valero in the city of Elche. The hosts will try to use their home ground advantage here, but Athletic are motivated to mark a massive improvement compared to what they did last season. Maybe the Basques are a slight favorite here, but in La Liga everything is unpredictable.