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Athletic Bilbao logo
La Liga | Gameweek 13
Nov 10, 2023 at 8pm UK
San Mames Barria
Celta Vigo logo

Athletic Bilbao
4 - 3
Celta Vigo

Sancet (37'), Guruzeta (45+5', 52'), Berenguer (90+8' pen.)
Simon (56'), Garcia (90+2')
FT(HT: 2-2)
Aspas (25'), Bamba (41'), Strand Larsen (66')
Aspas (39'), Guaita (90+5')

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

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

Athletic Bilbao will be bidding to make it three straight wins in all competitions when they continue their La Liga campaign at home to Celta Vigo on Friday night.

Ernesto Valverde's side are currently fifth in the table, boasting 21 points from 12 matches, while Celta sit down in 18th spot, with a tough start seeing them collect just seven points from their first 12 games.


Match preview

Athletic Bilbao coach Ernesto Valverde on October 22, 2023© Reuters

Athletic were involved in a five-goal thriller away to Villarreal last weekend, and the Basque outfit almost threw it away in the final exchanges after racing into a three-goal lead.

Indeed, the Lions were 3-0 ahead inside the first 30 minutes; they then conceded in the 86th and 87th minute to give Villarreal hope of an incredible comeback, but the visitors ultimately managed to hold on to win 3-2.

Valverde's side boast a record of six wins, three draws and three defeats from their 12 league matches this season, which has left them in fifth position in the table on 21 points, but they are four points behind fourth-placed Atletico Madrid, who still have a game in hand.

Athletic were also victorious in the Copa del Rey at the start of the month, overcoming Rubi to progress to the second round, and they have only lost one of their last five games in all competitions, which was a narrow defeat to Spanish champions Barcelona in La Liga.

The Lions have finished eighth in their last two seasons in Spain's top flight but were fifth as recently as 2015-16, so a return to European football for next term could be on the cards.

Celta Vigo coach Rafael Benitez before the match on October 21, 2023© Reuters

Celta, meanwhile, will enter this match off the back of a 1-1 draw with Sevilla last weekend; Carl Starfelt sent the Sky Blues ahead in the 22nd minute, only for Youssef En-Nesyri to level the scores late on.

Rafael Benitez's side have still only won once in the league this season, with a total of seven points from 12 matches leaving them down in 18th position in the table.

Celta's only La Liga success of the campaign came away to Almeria at the start of September, but they were victorious in the Copa del Rey at the start of the month, beating Turegano 4-0.

The Sky Blues have not played outside of Spain's top flight since the 2011-12 campaign, and it would be a surprise to see them relegated this season considering the calibre of their manager.

Celta have actually won two of their last three La Liga matches against Athletic, but they suffered a 2-1 defeat when the two teams locked horns in the corresponding game at San Mames last term.

Athletic Bilbao La Liga form:


Athletic Bilbao form (all competitions):


Celta Vigo La Liga form:


Celta Vigo form (all competitions):



Team News

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

Athletic will definitely be without the services of three players for this match, with Raul Garcia, Ander Herrera and Yeray Alvarez on the sidelines through injury.

Yuri Berchiche is also still a major doubt, so it is likely to again be Lekue at left-back for this match, with the team potentially unchanged from the one that started against Villarreal.

Alex Berenguer, Iker Muniain and Asier Villalibre are among the options for change in the forward areas, but Nico Williams, Oihan Sancet and Inaki Williams should again support centre-forward Gorka Guruzeta.

As for Celta, Joseph Aidoo is a long-term absentee due to a serious knee injury, while Mihailo Ristic remains a major doubt due to a muscular problem.

The Sky Blues will also be without the services of Renato Tapia following the midfielder's red card in the second half of the 1-1 draw with Sevilla last time out.

Fran Beltran is likely to come in for Tapia in the middle, while there could be a starting role out wide for Carles Perez, but Iago Aspas should keep his spot despite the fact that he is still waiting for his first goal of the season.


Athletic Bilbao possible starting lineup:
Simon; De Marcos, Vivian, Paredes, Lekue; Vesga, Ruiz de Galarreta; I Williams, Sancet, N Williams; Guruzeta

Celta Vigo possible starting lineup:
Guaita; Mingueza, Starfelt, Nunez, M Sanchez; Perez, Beltran, Sotelo, Bamba; Aspas, Larsen


SM words green background

We say: Athletic Bilbao 2-1 Celta Vigo

Celta were much-improved against Sevilla last time out and are certainly capable of causing Athletic problems on Friday night. The Lions are in good form, though, and we are expecting them to be good enough to collect another three points to continue their push towards the Champions League positions.



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


Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 1.5 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.Over 1.5:data


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Game History

How you voted: Athletic Bilbao vs Celta Vigo

Athletic Bilbao
87.0%
Draw
10.9%
Celta Vigo
2.2%
92
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Today's games header
Tables header RHS
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CReal Madrid38298187266195
2Barcelona38267579443585
3GironaGirona38256785463981
4Atletico MadridAtletico382441070432776
5Athletic Bilbao381911861372468
6Real Sociedad3816121051391260
7Real BetisBetis38141594845357
8Villarreal381411136565053
9Valencia381310154045-549
10AlavesAlaves381210163646-1046
11Osasuna38129174556-1145
12Getafe381013154254-1243
13Celta Vigo381011174657-1141
14Sevilla381011174854-641
15Mallorca38816143344-1140
16Las PalmasLas Palmas381010183347-1440
17Rayo Vallecano38814162948-1938
RCadizCadiz38615172655-2933
RAlmeria38312234375-3221
RGranada3849253879-4121


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