First Division - Day 37

Athletic Bilbao 0 - Numancia 2

Athletic: Aranzubia; Iraola, Murillo, Lacruz (Solabarrieta 53'), Del Horno; Gurpegui, Orbaiz; Arriaga (Julen Guerrero 53'), Tiko, Ezquerro; Llorente. 4-2-3-1.
Numancia: Juanma; Juanpa, Pignol, Otxoa, Tarantino (Graff 78'); Pablo Sanz (Antonio 74'), Palacios; Velasco, Carlos Merino (Ros 83'), Juanlu; Tevenet. 4-2-3-1.

Team changes: Athletic: Iraola, Del Horno, Arriaga for Luis Prieto, Casas, Yeste / Numancia: Juanma, Velasco, Tevenet for De Miguel, Miguel Pérez, Pineda.

0-1. 08. Carlos Merino. Ran on to pass from Tevenet to shoot past Aranzubia.
0-2. 89. Tevenet (penalty). After Gurpegui pushed over Pignol inside the area.

A disappointing last home match of the season for Athletic Bilbao, who were beaten 0-2 by the already relegated Numancia. With only the Intertoto cup to play for, interest in the San Mamés stadium was focused more on who would be leaving, in particular Del Horno and Ezquerro, who will probably be on their way to Chelsea and Barcelona this summer, and also for coach Ernesto Valverde, who has announced that he will not be staying on next season.

The Basque side had the better of the opening minutes, Tiko and Arriaga both going close. But with eight minutes on the clock the visitors broke out of their own half to open the scoring, ex Athletic midfielder Carlos Merino picking up a pass from Tevenet to beat Aranzubia.

It was the last time the Soria based side caused any problems for the local keeper until late in the game, but the home side were unable to beat a confident Juanma. Arriaga and Llorente put efforts over the bar before the break, and Juanma kept out efforts from Julen Guerrero, Arriaga and Del Horno after the restart.

But with Valverde throwing everything forward, Pignol picked up the ball on a rapid counterattack and was sandwiched in the area between Del Horno and Gurpegui. Tevenet stepped up to crash the resulting penalty past Aranzubia, and Juanpa could even have added a third when his curling shot was tipped over the bar by the keeper. End of term in Bilbao, but the defeat may even cost them a place in the Intertoto cup this summer.