• FT





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    Real Madrid


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    R Zaragoza



San Mames, Spain

Attendance: 35000

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Real Zaragoza

  • Apono 31' PEN
  • Hélder Postiga 42'

Bilbao bored by Llorente blabber

Athletic Bilbao's players are becoming tired of talking about Fernando Llorente as the row over the Spain striker's future overshadowed preparations for their game against Real Zaragoza.

Llorente was the top Spanish goal scorer in the Primera Division last year, but he fell out with the club's hierarchy this summer after refusing to sign a new contract and has only started one league game this season.

Despite Llorente's vow to leave the club next summer when his contract expires, president Josu Urrutia said this week that Athletic will not cash in on the player in January.

Some fans want the striker to leave as soon as possible, though - something which was made clear during the week when a group of supporters unfurled a ``Llorente - get out now'' banner at the club's training ground this week.

And Gomez admits the Athletic squad are not happy at the constant talk about Llorente's future.

``We are tired of all this talk about Llorente, very tired,'' the Athletic midfielder was quoted as saying on Marca's website.

Defender Borja Ekiza echoed his team-mate's comments.

He said: ``The best thing for everyone is to stop talking about this and concentrate on the game, on football.

``What we want is a little bit of calm so we can concentrate on the league and give it our all. ``This isn't good for the team. Fernando is a professional who works to the best of his ability every day and he will do so until the end.''

Athletic, who made the final of last year's Europa League after qualifying through the Copa del Rey, have struggled to break in to the top half of the table this term, although they host Zaragoza on the back of successive victories over Mallorca and Celta Vigo.

In Zaragoza they face a team on a run of just one win in five.

Centre-back Alvaro Gonzalez is expecting a tough game against the striker who Athletic have relied upon in Llorente's absence - Aritz Aduriz.

``It is going to be a very hard match,'' the 22-year-old said.

``Athletic have a lot of good passers and finishers and we will have to be very alert.

``They have started to get results it will be very complicated.

``Aduriz is one of the best Spanish strikers around. He is dangerous and I will have to watch out for him.''

Zaragoza trio Carlos Aranda, Glenn Loovens and Abraham have all returned to training after their respective injuries and could feature in the game at San Mames.

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