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Alaves logo
La Liga | Gameweek 6
Sep 22, 2023 at 8pm UK
Estadio de Mendizorroza
Athletic Bilbao logo
0 - 2
Athletic Bilbao

Kike (45+1'), Garcia (61'), Abqar (78')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Williams (18'), Sancet (76')
Berenguer (29'), Berchiche (31')

Preview: Alaves vs. Athletic Bilbao - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Friday's La Liga clash between Alaves and Athletic Bilbao, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Athletic Bilbao will be bidding to continue their impressive run of form when they make the trip to Basque rivals Alaves on Friday night.

The visitors are currently fourth in the La Liga table, boasting 10 points from their first five matches, while Alaves sit 14th, collecting six points from their opening five games of the season.

Match preview

Mallorca coach Luis Garcia on January 2, 2022© Reuters

Alaves were promoted back to La Liga via the 2022-23 Segunda Division playoffs, so their main goal for this season is to survive in the top flight, with any spot over 18th considered to be a success.

With that in mind, it has been a relatively solid start to the campaign, picking up six points from five matches, which has left them in 14th position in the table.

Alaves started their season with a 1-0 defeat to Cadiz before beating Sevilla 4-3 and losing 1-0 to Getafe in their final two matches of August.

Luis Garcia's side opened September with a 1-0 success over Alaves, but they were beaten 2-0 by Rayo Vallecano last time out to make it three straight defeats on their travels.

Alaves will be pleased to be back on home soil for this match, and El Glorioso have only lost one of their last five La Liga games with Athletic, recording two wins in the process, which have both been in front of their own fans.

Athletic Bilbao's Inaki Williams reacts on February 19, 2023© Reuters

Athletic have been one of the most impressive teams in La Liga this season, winning three, drawing one and losing one of their five matches to collect 10 points, which has left them in fourth spot in the table.

The Lions opened their campaign with a 2-0 home loss to Real Madrid before winning their next two, beating Osasuna 2-0 away and Real Betis 4-2 at home.

Ernesto Valverde's side then drew 0-0 with Mallorca ahead of the international break, but they were back to winning ways last time out, recording a 3-0 success over Cadiz.

The Red and Whites finished eighth in La Liga last season but will have their eyes on a potential return to European football for the 2024-25 campaign.

In brothers Inaki Williams and Nico Williams, Athletic have two of the most dynamic forwards in the league, but Gorka Guruzeta has been the main source of goals early this season, netting three times in five outings.

Alaves La Liga form:
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L

Athletic Bilbao La Liga form:
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • W

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Team News

Athletic Bilbao's Nico Williams in action with Atletico Madrid's Rodrigo de Paul on February 19, 2023© Reuters

Alaves will again be without the services of on-loan Atletico Madrid forward Giuliano Simeone due to an ankle injury that he picked up during pre-season.

The home side did not suffer any fresh issues against Rayo last time out, though, and head coach Garcia is expected to resist the temptation to shuffle his pack.

Kike Garcia should continue in the final third of the field, with support from Luis Rioja and Alex Sola in the wide areas, while Jon Guridi is again set to operate as the number 10.

As for Athletic, Nico Williams, who is currently being linked with the likes of Barcelona, Manchester United and Liverpool, remains a major doubt due to a muscle injury that he suffered on international duty.

Peru Nolaskoain is also out with a thigh problem, but the Basque side did not suffer any fresh issues during the three-goal success over Cadiz last time out.

The bulk of the XI that started against Cadiz should keep their spots, with Alex Berenguer likely to be given the nod on the left, but there might be a change in the middle of the defence, with Yeray potentially coming in for Aitor Paredes.

Alaves possible starting lineup:
Sivera; Gorosabel, Abqar, Marin, Duarte; Guevara, Blanco; Sola, Guridi, Rioja; Kike Garcia

Athletic Bilbao possible starting lineup:
Simon; De Marcos, Vivian, Yeray, Yuri; Vesga, Ruiz de Galarreta; I Williams, Sancet, Berenguer; Guruzeta

SM words green background

We say: Alaves 1-1 Athletic Bilbao

Alaves have been strong at home this season, and they are capable of making this a tricky match for Athletic. It would certainly not be a surprise to see an away win, but we just have a feeling that the points will be shared in this all-Basque clash.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting under 2.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 2.5:data

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Athletic Bilbao's Nico Williams in action with Atletico Madrid's Rodrigo de Paul on February 19, 2023
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Today's games header
Tables header RHS
1Real Madrid1512213392438
4Atletico MadridAtletico14101330131731
5Athletic Bilbao1584330181228
6Real Sociedad157532618826
7Real BetisBetis156721816225
8Las PalmasLas Palmas156361313021
11Rayo Vallecano154741622-619
18Celta Vigo151681525-109

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