First Division - Day 23

Valencia 2 - Athletic Bilbao 0

Valencia: Diego Alves; Montoya (Cancelo 79’), Mangala, Garay, Siqueira; Orellana (Bakkali 84’), Enzo Pérez (Carlos Soler 71‘), Dani Parejo; Munir, Zaza, Nani. 4-3-3.
Athletic: Iraizoz; De Marcos, Bóveda, Laporte (Etxeita 30’), Saborit; San José, Iturraspe (Williams 53’); Lekue (Aduríz 53‘), Raúl García, Muniain; Eraso. 4-2-3-1.

1-0. 13. Nani. Connected with Orellana pass and steered low shot wide of Iraizoz.
2-0. 45. Zaza. Picked up Munir pass and struck shot past keeper inside near post.

Yellow cards: Raúl García 29’.

Athletic Bilbao are now four points adrift of the European spots after they lost 2-0 at Valencia on Sunday afternoon. Diego Alves had to save an early effort from Lekue, but with just under a quarter of an hour gone Nani combined with Enzo Pérez and Orellana to open the scoring. Nani tested Iraizoz a few minutes later, and with half time approaching Zaza connected with Munir’s cross to make it two. Valverde had rested Aduríz and Williams after Thursday night’s Europa League game, but he brought both on in the opening minutes of the second half. However soon afterwards Aduríz limped off with an injury, and with Etxeita already on for the injured Laporte he had no replacements left. Even so the ten men put up a good fight, Williams and Raúl García bringing good saves out of Alves, but in the end it was a much needed win for the Ches, who are now seven points clear of the drop zone.