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Valverde to coach Bilbao for third time

Ernesto Valverde is to coach La Liga side Athletic Bilbao for a third time after being appointed to the post on Thursday.

The 58-year-old’s return is no surprise as newly-elected club president Jon Uriarte had said he was his preferred choice.

Valverde has been without a club since he was sacked as Barcelona coach in January 2020 — having led them to two league titles and a Copa del Rey trophy.

Valverde coached Bilbao from 2003-06 and then from 2013-17 — having played for them from 1990-96. He guided them to their first trophy in over 30 years with a 5-1 aggregate win over Barcelona in the 2015 Spanish Super Cup. 

Athletic finished eighth in La Liga last season, failing to qualify for European competitions.

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