Athletic beats Espanyol 2-1 to move closer to European spots

Oihan Sancet of Athletic Club duels for the ball with Sergi Gomez of RCD Espanyol during the LaLiga Santander match between Athletic Club and RCD Espanyol at San Mames Stadium on February 07, 2022 in Bilbao, Spain.

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Athletic Bilbao moved closer to the European qualification places in the Spanish league after beating Espanyol 2-1 on Monday.

Oihan Sancet and Iñigo Martínez scored in the first half to lead Athletic to the home victory that left it one point behind seventh-placed Real Sociedad. Athletic was four points behind fourth-placed Barcelona in the final Champions League spot.

Oihan Sancet of Athletic Club celebrates after scoring his team's first goal during the La Liga Santander match between Athletic Club and RCD Espanyol at San Mames Stadium on February 07, 2022 in Bilbao, Spain.


It was the second consecutive league win for Athletic, which last week eliminated Real Madrid in the quarterfinals of the Copa del Rey. It will host Valencia on Thursday in the first leg of the semifinals.

Espanyol, which took the lead with a goal by Tonny Vilhena in the third minute at San Mamés Stadium, stayed 13th in the league standings. It hasn't won five straight games in all competitions, including the last four in the league.

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