Feb 23, 2014 at 4pm UK at ​Estadio Benito Villamarin
Real Betis
0-2
Athletic Bilbao

Castro (31'), Reyes (33'), Perquis (33'), Sevilla (55')
Perquis (41'), Reyes (58')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Muniain (34' pen.), Guillermo (81')
Muniain (78')

Live Commentary: Real Betis 0-2 Athletic Bilbao - as it happened

Betis' forward Ruben Castro heads the ball past Rijeka's defender Niko Datkovic during the UEFA Europa League Group I football match Real Betis Balompie vs HNK Rijeka at the Benito Villamarin stadium in Sevilla on December 12, 2013
© Getty Images
Relive Sports Mole's commentary of the La Liga clash in Seville where Athletic Bilbao beat Real Betis 2-0.

Basement outfit Real Betis welcomed top-four hopefuls Athletic Bilbao to Seville on Sunday afternoon.

The visitors led 1-0 at the interval courtesy of a penalty from Iker Muniain, while Betis finished the first half with 10 men after Damien Perquis received two bookings in quick succession.

Betis were down to nine men just before the hour mark when Lolo Reyes was handed his second yellow card for handball.

It got worse for the home side late on when Guillermo headed home from close range to secure all the points for Bilbao.

Read how it all unfolded in Sports Mole's minute-by-minute live commentary of the action below.


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3.31pmAfternoon all! The first of our three back-to-back live La Liga commentaries comes from Seville as Real Betis welcome Athletic Bilbao. The home side have won just three of their 24 matches this season, with that total leaving them bottom, 11 points from safety. Bilbao, meanwhile, have their sights firmly set on the Champions League.

3.34pmTEAMS:

BETIS: Adan; Juanfran, Perquis, N'Diaye, Dídac; Reyes, Nono, Sevilla; Baptistao, Castro, Cedrick

BILBAO: Iraizoz; Iraola, San Jose, Gurpegui, Balenziaga; Rico, Iturraspe, Herrera; Susaeta, Sola, Muniain


3.37pmSo there we have it. On-loan Atletico Madrid forward Leo Baptistao joins Ruben Castro in the Betis attack this afternoon. There are also starts for Salva Sevilla and Cedrick Mabwati. Bilbao, meanwhile, hand a start to Kike Sola with Aritz Aduriz unavailable. There is also no Ibai Gomez in the 18.

3.40pmIn terms of the recent meetings between the two sides, both have won two of the last five games, with the further fixture – the corresponding match last season – ending in a 1-1 draw. The pair also met in this season's Copa del Rey, with Bilbao advancing courtesy of a 2-1 aggregate score.

3.43pmBetis challenged for the top four for a large chunk of last season, but this season could not have been much different. They are onto their third manager of the campaign and enter the match rock bottom of the table on 14 points. They were in Europa League action on Thursday, with the Spanish outfit drawing 1-1 with Rubin Kazan in the first leg of their last-32 tie.

3.46pmAs mentioned, Betis have won just three of their 24 league games this season, with all three of those victories coming on their own patch. However, they still have the second-worst home record in the league having taken just 12 points from their 12 matches. On the road, meanwhile, they have failed to win in 12, losing 10 times in the process.

3.49pmConceding goals has been a problem for Betis this season with 53 in their 24 matches, which is the second-worst total in the league. Bilbao, meanwhile, have fared much better with just 30 against. Down the other end, Betis are the lowest scorers with 20, while Bilbao have found the back of the net on 43 occasions.

3.52pmBilbao enter the match off the back of a 2-1 home defeat against Espanyol last weekend, with that result ending their unbeaten league run at San Mames this season. They have not won in the league since beating Osasuna 5-1 at the end of January, but remain in fourth position in the table on 44 points.

3.55pmBilbao's home record this season has been extremely strong with nine wins from their 13 matches, losing just once in the process. However, they have somewhat struggled on the road with just four wins from 11, losing five times in the process. As it stands, they are in control of the final Champions League position.

3.58pmPREDICTION: In truth, it is now or never for Betis. Draws are no good at this stage of the season. That should play into Bilbao's hands this afternoon and create an open contest. I expect both teams to score, but I just think that Bilbao have enough about them to secure a narrow win. My score prediction is 2-1 Bilbao.

1 minHere we go then. Both sets of players join us on the pitch for the first period. The pre-match handshakes have been undertaken and the flags have been exchanged. Let's hope for an entertaining contest in Seville. The home side get the first 45 minutes underway.



2 minIt must be said that there is a wonderful atmosphere inside the stadium this afternoon. Betis might be struggling, but they have the continued support of their fans. Indeed it is a bright start from the hosts who immediately break down the right with Castro, but his cross is blocked by Iraola.

4 minNot too much to report in terms of attacking pressure in the opening four minutes with both sides attempting to settle into the match. Bilbao attempt to force the issue down the right with Herrera, but his low cross is cleared by on-loan Sunderland defender Alfred N'Diaye.

6 minThe pace has certainly quickened in the last minute or two with both sides moving the ball quickly in the final third. However, neither team has been able to find that elusive pass thus far. The early signs are good in terms of the intensity in Seville.



8 minPositive moment for the home side as Cedrick drives down the right before finding Castro inside the box, but the ball had just gone out of play at the byline. Bilbao are down the other end with Herrera moments later, but the midfielder cannot find his fellow Spaniard Muniain, who had moved away from Reyes with a clever piece of movement.

10 minThe referee has been more involved than he would have liked in the last couple of moments due to a number of late challenges. However, the official has not yet issued a card. The home supporters continue to create a stunning atmosphere inside the stadium as Betis' positive start continues.

11 minCHANCE! The first real chance of the match arrives for Bilbao as Sola beats the offside trap before attempting to place his effort under Adan, but the Spanish goalkeeper makes a really fine save to deny the former Osasuna forward.

14 minBetter from Bilbao in the last couple of moments as they start to force the issue in the wide areas with Susaeta and Muniain seeing plenty of the ball. Sola has possession inside the Betis box once more moments later, but Didac Vila just does enough to clear the danger. Pulsating tempo to this La Liga encounter in Seville.

16 minSlightly frustrating couple of minutes for Betis with the offside flag going against them on three occasions. Neither side is really on top at the moment as Bilbao force a free kick down the other end, but Susaeta's delivery is headed clear by the powerful Nono.

18 minPlenty happening in the middle of the park at the moment as the challenges continue to arrive from both sides. Susaeta has possession in an advanced area for Bilbao, but just loses control at the vital moment. Down the other end, the same thing happens for Betis top scorer Castro.

20 minCROSSBAR! Muniain rattles the crossbar for Bilbao as the Spaniard meets a backheel from Susaeta. Just a few signs that the away side are starting to warm to their task. However, Betis remain a threat with their pace and invention in the final third.

23 minNot too much to report in terms of clear chances in the last few moments with both sides guilty of losing possession too easily in the final third. You just get the feeling that the first goal - if there indeed is one - could be decisive in this type of contest.

25 minCHANCE! Wonderful chance for Bilbao as San Jose meets a free kick from Susaeta, but the defender can only turn his effort wide of the post. Poor defending from Betis, who just watched the centre-back drift into the area.

27 minSlightly untidy period of the match in the last couple of moments with the referee forced to intervene following a number of late challenges. Betis remain a threat on the counter, but Bilbao are the move inventive in the final third. Little over 15 minutes of the first period remaining in Seville.

30 minJust a reminder that following this match we have action from the Mestalla as Valencia welcome Granada - be sure to remain with us for that. Back to Seville and not too much is happening as the first period continues to gather pace. Both sides are in need of some inspiration here.

32 minHalf-chance for Betis as Nosa meets a deep cross from Castro, but his header is just wide of the post. Despite the stop-start nature of the match, the home supporters continue to create a wonderful atmosphere. A goal for Betis and this stadium would explode...



33 minBetis want a penalty as Castro goes down inside the box, but the referee instead books the forward for simulation after he fell under contact from Balenziaga. I have seen them given, but the Spaniard did attempt to con the referee. Safe to say that the home supporters are not best pleased with the decision.

33 minPENALTY TO BILBAO!

34 minBilbao are awarded a penalty as Perquis brings Sola to the ground inside the box. The home players are incensed, but it was a clumsy challenge from the defender. What a couple of minutes.

34 minGOAL! Betis 0-1 Bilbao (Muniain, pen)

35 minMuniain makes no mistake from the spot as the Spaniard places his effort into the bottom corner. Bilbao strike first in Seville!

38 minIt is harsh on Betis, who have matched Bilbao for long periods. However, that is football at this level. The home side had a penalty appeal turned down before conceding one moments later. They need to keep their focus in the latter stages of the half as Bilbao continue to press forward.

40 minThe referee continues to make himself unpopular with the home supporters as another penalty appeal is turned down after Leo had hit the ground. Cedrick forces a corner from San Jose moments later, but the resulting set piece from Nono is headed clear by Sola.

41 minCHANCE! Another opportunity for Bilbao as Muniain finds Rico just inside the box, but the midfielder's low effort moves across the face of goal. It was neither a cross nor a shot. You just get the feeling that one more big chance will arrive in the latter stages of the half. The intensity is incredible.

41 minRED CARD! Perquis (Betis)

42 minBetis are reduced to 10 men as Perquis picks up his second yellow card for a really poor challenge on Balenziaga. Not a good half for the centre-back, who received his first booking for fouling Sola inside the box.

44 minHow on earth do Betis recover from this? They are bottom of the table, 11 points from safety and now a goal down and a man down at home. It could yet get worse as the late challenges continue to arrive from the home side.

45+1 minHALF TIME: Betis 0-1 Bilbao

4.48pmSo there we have it. The referee brings the first period to an end with Bilbao leading 1-0 courtesy of a penalty from Muniain. It has been a terrible half for Betis, who have had one player sent off and a further two booked. It is a long way back for the basement outfit, who are currently 11 points from safety in La Liga.

4.53pmSTATISTICS: Bilbao have had more of the ball with 55%, while they have had five attempts - two of which have been on target - to Betis' four. As mentioned, it has been a feisty half in terms of challenges, with the referee booking two Betis players and sending Perquis from the field. Let's hope the excitement continues in the second period.

4.58pmBENCH WATCH: Betis are without Jorge Molina this afternoon, but they do have attacking options on their bench in the shape of Chuli and Nosa Igiebor. Bilbao, meanwhile, are also without a couple of key players in the shape of Aduriz and Gomez, but boast the likes of Oscar de Marcos and Erik Moran in reserve.

46 minHere we go then. Both sets of players join us on the pitch for the second period. You just get the feeling that the next goal - if there indeed is one - could be vital in terms of the final result. Right, the away side get the second 45 minutes underway in Seville. Betis are in desperate need of some inspiration.

48 minOne change for Betis at the interval with Figueras replacing Leo, who really struggled to influence proceedings in the first period. Bilbao, however, go with the same XI, which is not much of a surprise. The away side have made a bright start to the half with Rico immediately threatening with a mazy run.

50 minHalf-chance for the home side as Cedrick picks the pocket of San Jose on the edge of the box before finding Castro, who quickly returns the favour. However, Iraola is across on the cover. Moments later, N'Diaye produces a wonderful challenge down the other end to deny Sola a free run on goal.

53 minCHANCE! Good pressure from the home side in the last couple of moments with the high ball causing problems to Bilbao. Betis have a free kick in a dangerous position moments later after Sola fells N'Diaye, but the resulting set piece from Sevilla is headed over by Castro, who had time and space inside the box.

55 minHalf-chance for Bilbao this time as Herrera finds some space inside the Betis box, but his low effort just moves wide of the post. The home side continue to commit numbers in the final third, but you have to worry about the space they are leaving in behind. Cedrick brings a smart save from Bilbao goalkeeper Iraizoz moments later as the pressure continues.

57 minSevilla becomes the latest name to enter the book for fouling Sola down the right. The resulting free kick for Bilbao is delivered by Herrera, but Adan is on hand to make a fine save. Little over 30 minutes of the second period remaining in Seville.

58 minRED CARD! Reyes (Betis)

59 minBetis are down to nine men as Reyes picks up his second yellow card for handball in the middle of the pitch. For me, that is harsh. More bad news for Betis supporters.

61 minHalf-chance for Bilbao as Iturraspe finds some space outside the box, but his effort is straight into the arms of Adan. Sevilla has a strike down the other end, but his effort is into the arms of Iraizoz.

63 minBetis make their second change of the match as Nosa enters the field in place of Nono, which is not much of a surprise. Despite the home side being down to nine men, they are just 1-0 behind. A draw is no good to them at this stage of the season, which should create an enthralling final 30 minutes or so.

65 minUnlucky for Bilbao as Sola converts from close range only to see that the offside flag had been raised. Replays have shown that the forward was in an onside position. Finally some good news for the home side. Bilbao have started to dominate the possession, which will certainly tire those in green and white shirts.

67 minGood character shown by the home side as Vila drives down the left before winning a corner from San Jose. The resulting set piece is delivered by Sevilla, but Castro's effort is deflected wide of the post from close range. Betis want a penalty, but the referee is not interested.

70 minCHANCE! Wonderful chance for Jordi to level the scores as he rises inside the Bilbao box, but his header just drops wide of the post. Moments later, Betis have their third and final change as Matilla replaces Cedrick, which is a surprise for me.

72 minBilbao make their first change of the match as Oscar de Marcos enters the field in place of Rico. You just get the feeling that there is another goal or two in this match. Betis are far from finished despite their two-man disadvantage.

74 minBetis just cannot keep the ball at the moment as Bilbao force the issue around their box. Another goal for the away side ends this contest there is no question about that. However, at 1-0, Betis always have a chance. Little over 15 minutes of football remaining in Seville.

76 minNot too much to report in terms of chances in the last few moments, but Bilbao remain in control of the possession. With nine men, it is tough on the legs of the home side, whose supporters continue to back their team in the latter stages. Their support is just sensational.

78 minIt is almost like a training exercise for the away side at the moment as the Basque side continue to keep possession of the ball in the home side's half. They are not too worried about scoring a second, but that could haunt them in the final 10 minutes with Betis a threat on the counter attack.

81 minHalf-chance for the home side as N'Diaye meets a cross from Sevilla, but his effort just moves wide of the post. Nosa tries his luck from distance moments later, but his effort was always moving wide of the post. Little under 10 minutes of football remaining in Seville.

81 minBilbao look to their bench for the second time as Muniain is replaced by Guillermo for the final stages of this match. In truth, not too much is happening at the moment with the Basque outfit in complete control of the possession.

81 minGOAL! Betis 0-2 Bilbao (Guillermo)

82 minWow! That is some introduction! Guillermo scores with his first touch as he heads a Susaeta cross into the back of the net from close range. Game over.

85 minA number of Betis supporters have started to make their way towards the exits, which is not much of a surprise. They face an incredible fight to remain in La Liga this season. It is still possible, but extremely unlikely.

87 minYou just get the feeling that there are more goals in this for Bilbao with a number of the Betis players out on their feet. This result will consolidate fourth position for the Basque outfit as the season enters its latter stages.

89 minHalf-chance for the home side this time as Nosa meets a cross from Sevilla, but his header brings a save from Iraizoz. The resulting corner is delivered by Sevilla, but Balenziaga is on hand to clear the danger. Little over one minute of normal time remaining in Seville.

90 minBilbao make their third and final change in the final minute as Iraola is replaced by Saborit. Just a reminder that up next Valencia host Granada in La Liga.

90+2 minThe fourth official indicates that we will play an additional three minutes and we are indeed into the second of those. Possession football from the away side as time continues to run away from Betis.

90+3 minFULL TIME: Betis 0-2 Bilbao

5.51pmSo there we have it. Bilbao beat nine-man Betis 2-0 in Seville. Thanks for joining Sports Mole for the action and be sure to remain with us for Valencia against Granada. Until then!

Real Betis' Didac Vila celebrates with teammates after scoring against Rubin Kazan during their Europa League match on February 20, 2014
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