Marcelino eager for home comforts
Marcelino has stressed the importance of making San Mames a fortress as Athletic Bilbao gear up to host Rayo Vallecano on Tuesday.
Bilbao are priced at 3/4 to pick up a win when 4/1 Rayo make the trip to the Basque region, while the draw is available at 5/2.
Bilbao undoubtedly improving
After taking charge in January, Marcelino led Los Leones to 11th place last term and the former Valencia and Villarreal boss has his sights set on a top half finish this time around.
Bilbao have made a strong start to the current campaign and they head into Tuesday's encounter with Rayo with an unbeaten record.
We are going to try to make San Mames a fortress.Marcelino
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They held defending champions Atletico Madrid to a goalless draw on Saturday and also picked up a point when they hosted Barcelona in August.
Rayo, managed by former Athletic captain Andoni Iraola, have also started positively, picking up seven points from five outings, and Marcelino is expecting a tough evening.
Winnable game for Los Leones
However, the 56-year-old insists his side must come through this type of fixture with the maximum points if they are going to maintain a challenge at the top end of the standings.
Marcelino said: "It is a dynamic, happy team that always plays forward. They have quite a few similarities with our team in the offensive game aspect. It's going to make things very difficult for us.
"These types of matches are the ones that are going to give us the possibility of being at the top of the table.
"We are going to try to make San Mames a fortress and go through these games. We are going to find it very difficult to win it."