Elche – Ath Bilbao Predictions
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Elche 0-0 Ath Bilbao
Date: 16.08.2021 | Match at: 21:00 | League: SPAIN: LaLiga – Round 1 | Tip: Over 1.5 Goals | Odds: 1.50 | Bookie: Unibet.
Elche – Ath Bilbao Match Preview
- Elche enter a second successive top-flight campaign for the first time since 2014/15, staying in La Liga (LL) after finishing 2020/21 with back-to-back victories. The spectre of relegation may not be staved off this time though, as Elche haven’t remained a top-flight side for longer than two campaigns since their relegation way back in 1988/89.
- The hosts’ strong end to last campaign included a 2-0 H2H win here at Estadio Manuel Martínez Valero, and pulling off such a feat again would cement three straight top-flight wins on Elche’s books for the first time since October 2018. However, they’ve lost all five LL games following back-to-back successes since that time, failing to score on four occasions.
- Athletic Bilbao’s entirely-Basque squad emerged as a surprise package last season, as they contested two Copa del Rey finals whilst achieving a top-half finish. Starting on the road for a second successive campaign, Athletic are unbeaten in three of their last four LL openers (W2, D1, L1) though that sole defeat came last season (0-2).
- The visitors won just a quarter of their away league games entered as favourites last season (W2, D2, L4), picking up just 0.84 points per game away (in comparison to 1.58 at home) despite a lack of hostile home fans. Furthermore, away sides have lost ‘to-nil’ in each of the last five managerial H2Hs between Fran Escribá and Marcelino.
- Players to watch: Now permanently signed by Elche, Lucas Boyé impressed with seven LL goals last season, including the opener in this H2H. Athletic’s Iñaki Williams is just seven more consecutive LL appearances away from equalling the league record of 202 held by Luis Arconada.
- Hot stat: Elche have lost each of their last five LL season openers without scoring.
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