The signings in Athletic, a path marked by failures

ANDl claimed power of Athletic in the market It staggers. After decades in which the lions had a hand in transfers, the club has ceased to be attractive for many of the players he is targeting. What’s more, in the last two summers he has received more clubs than joys. Saving Berenguer, who did agree to return to LaLiga After a stage in Turin, the club had two unsuccessful approaches with Javi Martínez and dealt in a curious way with Fernando Llorente, who did agree to sign but when the legal procedures began to do so, he found the negative response from the club.

Javi Martínez (June 2021 and September 2020)

The one from Ayegui will play for the Qatar Sports Club, where they await you this week to formalize the signing and presentation. The Navarrese will change Munich, which has been his home since 2012, for Doha. Javi Martínez was signed by Athletic de Osasuna when he was still a youth paying 6 million euros to the El Sadar club. In 2012, Bayern took him away from Bilbao with the same key: paying a clause that had already risen to 40 million euros at the time. The Athletic wanted to sign him last summer and he has also tried this. The previous year there was no option of arrangement because he still had one year left on his contract in Munich and the footballer has preferred to change of scene and get to know another football. In the final leg of the 2020 market close Jon Berasategui, general director of the club, Rafa Alkorta, sports director, and Gaizka Garitano, then coach, met with the footballer in Ayegui to deal with the handover. It was not done. The agreement demanded that the player renounce a good part of the salary he had at Bayern and Athletic was not clear about paying the Germans for the player. The offer remained for this summer with the idea that the response would be quick. Without finishing June, Javi Martínez has already opted for Qatar.

Fernando Llorente (October 2020)

The Udinese striker is protagonist of one of the most bizarre signing attempts in history. Last summer he was a member of Naples and before the market closed he Athletic began to work on the options of a signing that the same club later threw away. Ibaigane already knew that Javi Martínez was staying at Bayern and Llorente was open to him. The one from Rincón de Soto was a footballer liked by the sports management and the coach. On the last day of the market the signing was about to be made because members of the squad were also interested in it. “The players asked me if we could bring Llorente, who they thought was good for the team because they thought he could reinforce it. The player knows that the team is in a bad situation and wants to improve it. Fernando wanted to come to Athletic,” explained the direct sports. A Bilbao law firm was aware of the movement and preparing documentation that he had hours to surrender. But everything suddenly stopped. The Board of Directors did not take the step to authorize the signing. There was division in this regard and he sent the opinion of the Sports Commission, which was clear in the no to the arrival of the footballer who years before had decided to leave Athletic to sign for Juventus. The forward stayed in Naples until in the winter market he signed for Udinese.

The former footballer from Osasuna, the club from which he went to Borussia Dortmund, was in advanced negotiations to sign for Athletic on more than one occasion. But a pact that necessarily had to include agreements with Borussia and Newcastle, then the clubs to which the Navarrese belonged, did not finish. In the summer of 2017 Merino left Borussia to play in Newcastle when everything indicated that he could sign for Athletic: the lions were trained by Ziganda, who is a good friend of the footballer’s father and, above all, he was one of those who valued the player. Well no, Athletic found out that Merino was going to Newcastle the same day he was traveling to Bucharest to play the last Europa League preview he has played to date. Interest was maintained and continued alive in the following winter market – when the British media assumed that the move to Bilbao depended only on Athletic paying the amount demanded by the magpies club – but the conditions were not met either. . The put option remained open and that summer the player went to Real, which did pay what Newcastle demanded and that it took very little to get in tune with the footballer.

Mikel Oyarzabal (August 2016)

The attempt to sign the captain of the Real Sociedad was a dark episode in the history of Athletic. A club executive and a prominent executive of the Board met in Jaca with the footballer’s father in August 2016. They offered him a long-term project in Bilbao, but Instead of leaving there with the answer and settling the matter for better or for worse, the rojiblancos were permissive and agreed to meet another day. The footballer’s father did not take long to contact Aperribay, president of the Royal Society, to communicate the neighbor’s intentions. Days after the meeting with the Athletic representatives La Real announced the renewal of Oyarzabal, a player that Athletic could have signed when he was in the lower categories of Eibar but there the Real was also more successful.

June 21, 2021 admin

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