Athletic Bilbao vs Granada predictions, H2H and match preview for this Wednesday’s Copa del Rey Semi-Final 1st Leg. Read on for analysis and predicted line-ups as both sides bid to take a step towards April’s showpiece in Seville.
Athletic Bilbao vs Granada Preview
After a truly extraordinary week in the Copa del Rey, we are left with an unlikely Semi-Final line-up. If everything goes to script from here, a Basque derby Final between Athletic Club and Real Sociedad will be the mouth-watering outcome. However if this season’s Copa so far is anything to go by, we might as well expect the unexpected from here and Granada will feel they have every chance of ruining the Basque party, especially with the 2nd Leg of this Semi-Final to be played at Nuevo Los Cármenes.
Athletic sealed their place in this stage with a dramatic late home win against Barcelona last week. There will be a different dynamic here as they approach this tie as favourites and they do so with their hopes of European qualification this season also most likely resting on this competition. Athletic lost at Anoeta in La Liga against La Real at the weekend and it’s now 8 league games without victory for the Basques.
Gaizka Garitano’s side last league win did come against Granada though and the Andalusians will be hoping to set the record straight as they return to San Mames just two months on from that 2-0 defeat. Granada are only one point behind Athletic in the league standings but they do travel north in the knowledge that all of their last eight away league games have ended in defeat, which clearly is a worry.
Athletic have the fewer selection problems heading into this. Iker Muniain was sent off in the league at the weekend but is available for this one and should start for Athletic who are likely to switch back to a back four having used three centre-backs against Barcelona in the last round. Granada are still missing the likes of Quini and Fede Vico to injury while they also have doubts over Angel Montoro and Alex Martinez.
by Mark Sochon – @marksoc1
Athletic Bilbao vs Granada Predictions
Score Prediction: 1-0 Athletic
Granada have been beaten to nil in all of their last six away league games and it’s hard to see them creating too much here against La Liga’s 3rd meanest defence. They are though organised enough to make this tough for an Athletic side that is hardly packed with creativity. A tight, low-scoring game, in many ways a typical 1st Leg is likely, but the Basques should have enough to secure a slender advantage.
Copa del Rey Betting Tips (18+)
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Athletic Bilbao vs Granada H2H
- Last 6 Competitive Meetings: 3 Athletic Wins, 1 Granada Win, 2 Draws.
- Athletic were 2-0 winners when the sides met on this ground in December.
- Granada’s last victory over Athletic came at home in 2015 (2-1).
- They’ve lost on 4 of their last 6 trips to San Mames, but did win 1-0 here in La Liga in September 2014.
Predicted Line Ups
Simon – Yuri, Martinez, Nunez, Capa – Dani Garcia, Vesga – Cordoba, Raul Garcia, Muniain – Williams (4-2-3-1)
Escandell – Martinez, Vallejo, Sanchez, Foulquier – Herrera, Gonalons – Vadillo, Fernandez, Puertas – Soldado (4-2-3-1)
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