The Marcelo Bielsa era got off to a rough start at Athletic Bilbao, as the Basque side failed to win in their first five La Liga matches. They appear to be turning the corner, though, as they now have three straight wins in all competitions and two straight wins in La Liga. They sealed their first home league win on Monday night, easily defeating Osasuna 3-1 on the back of an excellent performance by young attacker Iker Muniain.
Athletic Bilbao pumped the brakes in the second half and allowed Osasuna to score in stoppage time - Javad Nekounam converted a penalty after a Javi Martinez handball - but that was simply because they didn't have to push the pace in the final 45. They were already up 3-0.
Their first half performance was nothing short of stunning. After 30 minutes of building up their attack and coming into the game, Muniain broke the deadlock with a 30th minute goal that opened the floodgates and set the stage for a great end to the half. Igor Gabilondo added another in the 38th, then Javi Martínez scored with a header following a set piece just before the whistle blew for halftime.
Muniain received a standing ovation from the crowd at San Mames when he was subbed off in the 75th minute, and it was well deserved. The 18-year-old star put in a fantastic performance, and he appears to be truly flourishing in his new No. 10 role under Bielsa.