For the second time in five days, Real Sociedad and Athletic Bilbao will lock horns, in a La Liga clash on Wednesday at 8pm (UK time).
Sociedad beat Bilbao 1-0 in the delayed 2020 Copa del Rey final to secure their first piece of major silverware since 1987 but the focus now turns to league play with both Basque rivals looking to finish as high in the table as they can.
How to live stream Real Sociedad vs Athletic Bilbao online:
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Where to watch Real Sociedad vs Athletic Bilbao on TV:
- UK: La Liga TV
- US: beIN SPORTS
Scoreline prediction: Real Sociedad 1-1 Athletic Bilbao
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Real Sociedad vs Athletic Bilbao build-up, previous line-ups & injury news:
Sociedad can close the gap on Sevilla in the fourth and final Champions League spot to 10 points with another Basque derby win here, though their hopes of crashing the top four would admittedly remain slim. Imanol Alguacil gave a memorable and passionate press conference in the wake of the Copa del Rey final, beautifully toeing the line between manager and supporter. But he must quickly regain his focus to ensure his players don’t become complacent and sleepwalk through the rest of this season with plenty still to play for.
For Bilbao, this game will first and foremost be about exacting their revenge for a heartbreaking cup final loss. However, Marcelino’s men can move to within seven points of Sociedad in seventh and just eight points behind sixth-placed Villarreal, so European qualification remains well and truly on the cards. But Los Leones have won just two of their last 10 games across all competitions, form they must improve if they’re to chase down those above them in the La Liga table.
- Real Sociedad (vs Athletic Bilbao): Remiro; Gorosabel, Zubeldia, Le Normand, Monreal; Silva*, Zubimendi, Merino; Portu, Isak, Oyarzabal.
- Athletic Bilbao (vs Real Sociedad): Simon; De Marcos, Alvarez, Martinez, Berchiche; Berenguer, Vencedor, Garcia, Muniain; Garcia, Williams.
Asier Illarramendi is out until May with a calf injury and is joined on the sidelines by David Silva, who has an adductor problem. Luca Sangalli is out, while Miguel Moya is a doubt.
Marcelino appears to be clear of any fresh injury and suspension concerns heading into Wednesday’s match.
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Player to watch: Mikel Oyarzabal (Real Sociedad)
After scoring the penalty that delivered Sociedad’s first major trophy in 34 years, Mikel Oyarzabal will understandably head into this week’s subsequent clash on cloud nine. Can he repeat that feat on Wednesday to truly rub salt into the Bilbao wounds?
The omens are good. Indeed, Oyarzabal now has five goals in 11 career appearances against Sociedad’s fiercest rivals, with no club conceding more at the hands of the 23-year-old. And although he hasn’t scored since early February, Oyarzabal is still second only to Alexander Isak (12) for La Liga goals this season (10).
Even though the goals have dried up, Oyarzabal has continued to provide assists at a healthy rate, notching two in his last five games to take his total to six for the season. Whether it be scoring himself or making the final pass for someone else, the Spain international will once again be Alguacil’s chief attacking threat this week as he seeks further Euskal Derbia glory.
La Liga 2020/21 recent form:
- Real Sociedad: LLWDW
- Athletic Bilbao: DDLWD
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