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Dec 4, 2020 at 8pm UK
Athletic BilbaoAthletic Bilbao
0-2
Celta VigoCelta Vigo

Nunez (26'), Vesga (84')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Mallo (61'), Aspas (78')
Murillo (53')
/esi/1339/6_G_1_123643/index.html?art_id=424752&game_id=123643&sport_id=1&ESI

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

:Headline: 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.
Sports Mole

Celta Vigo will be looking to move out of the La Liga relegation zone when they continue their 2020-21 campaign away to Athletic Bilbao on Friday night.

The visitors picked up an important three points against Granada on Sunday to move off the bottom of the table, while Athletic collected a welcome point at Getafe last time out.


Match preview

Consistency has certainly been an issue for Athletic this season, but a record of 13 points from 10 matches represents a solid start to the campaign for the Basque outfit.

Gaizka Garitano's side have picked up positive results in their last two matches, thumping Real Betis 4-0 at home on November 23 before collecting a point away to Getafe on Sunday.

Athletic have actually now won each of their last three league games on home soil, including an impressive 2-1 success over Sevilla at the end of October, and they are just three points off fifth spot at this stage.

There is no getting away from the fact that it has been a disappointing few years for the club, who finished fourth in 2013-14 but have since dropped down the division.

Athletic played out a 1-1 draw with Celta in the corresponding match during the 2019-20 campaign but have not lost a La Liga game to Friday's opponents on home soil since October 2006.

Celta, as mentioned, picked up an extremely important three points at home to Granada last time out, recording a 3-1 victory to move off the bottom of the table.

The strugglers actually fell behind to a Luis Suarez strike in the 25th minute of the contest, but Nolito levelled the scores in the 27th minute before Miguel Baeza and Fran Beltran both registered late on.

Celta are still inside the bottom three, having picked up just 10 points from their 11 matches, but they are only four points off seventh-placed Barcelona, which is an indication of how things stand in the table.

Eduardo Coudet has now won one and lost one of his two matches since replacing Oscar Garcia as head coach, and the 46-year-old will be eyeing another positive result on Friday night.

The Sky Blues have only just survived in La Liga in the last two seasons - finishing 17th on both occasions - and will be determined to avoid another relegation battle in 2020-21 if at all possible.

Athletic Bilbao La Liga form: WLWLWD

Celta Vigo La Liga form: LDLDLW


Team News

Athletic will be without the services of key central defender Inigo Martinez as the Spaniard is suspended due to the yellow card that he picked up against Getafe last time out.

Fellow defenders Ander Capa and Yuri Berchiche are also unavailable for selection, meaning that there will have to be a reshuffle at the back for the home side.

Mikel Balenziaga, Unai Nunez and Inigo Lekue could all come into the XI, but there are not expected to be any changes further forward with Asier Villalibre likely to keep his spot at the tip of the attack.

As for Celta, Okay Yokuslu is suspended due to the straight red card that he picked up against Granada, while David Junca, Emre Cor, Kevin Vazquez and Sergio Alvarez are still injured.

Santi Mina and Iago Aspas operated as a front two last time out and that is again expected to be the case on Friday with Nolito and Denis Suarez providing support from behind.

Brais Mendez should earn another position in the XI, but Baeza and Beltran are likely to start on the bench once again despite both scoring in the win over Granada.

Athletic Bilbao possible starting lineup:
Simon; Balenziaga, Yeray, Nunez, Lekue; Vesga, Vencedor; Berenguer, Muniain, Williams; Villalibre

Celta Vigo possible starting lineup:
Blanco; Mallo, Araujo, Murillo, Olaza; Mendez, Tapia, Suarez; Nolito; Aspas, Mina


We say: Athletic Bilbao 2-2 Celta Vigo

Athletic will enter the match as the favourites, but the home side have some key players absent, and Celta's performance against Granada must be respected. There is every chance that this could be an open game full of goals, and we are tipping relatively a high-scoring draw on Friday night.


Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or draw 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.Home/Draw:data


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La Liga Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Atletico MadridAtletico1815213682847
2Real Madrid19124334161840
3Barcelona19114439172237
4Sevilla19113526161036
5Villarreal2081022819934
6Real Sociedad2087531181331
7Granada208482434-1028
8Real Betis208392634-827
9Celta Vigo206682431-724
10CadizCadiz206681727-1024
11Athletic Bilbao197392623324
12Levante195862728-123
13Getafe196581723-623
14Valencia204882629-320
15EibarEibar204881721-420
16Real Valladolid204882029-920
17Osasuna204791929-1019
18AlavesAlaves2046101829-1118
19ElcheElche183871625-917
20Huesca2011091429-1513
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5PanathinaikosPanathinaikos189452012831
6Asteras TripolisAsteras198651919030
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11PAS GianninaPAS Giannina183691622-615
12PanetolikosPanetolikos182610922-1312
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