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Soccer News of Sunday, 31 May 2015


Inaki scores for Athletic in Copa del Rey final

Hispano-Ghanaian forward Inaki Williams scored for Athletic Bilbao in the Copa del Rey final against Barcelona, but was unable to help the Basque side avoid a 3-1 defeat.

The 2014-15 season will be remembered as a breakout campaign for the 20-year-old, who has has taken his first impressive steps of a nascent professional career.

While his memorable year ultimately ended in defeat at the Camp Nou, Williams delivered an outstanding performance—hitting the woodwork and scoring a late consolation—and demonstrated his class against truly elite opponents.

Over 99,000 witnessed a thrilling final and a glorious offensive display from Lionel Messi who, for all Williams’s class, utterly stole the show.

The Argentine superstar opened the scoring after 20 minutes, before bagging a sublime second on 64 minutes with a goal that will surely be remembered among the greatest scored by the Barca hero.

His goals game either side of a Neymar finish on 36 minutes—a goal that was the 119th scored by the club’s offensive trio of the Brazilian, Messi and Luis Suarez.

Only five minutes after Neymar’s goal—and Barca’s second—Williams hit the framework with a thunderous volley. Against different, mortal opponents, the Ghanaian’s effort might have changed the course of the match.

But not against Barcelona, who brought the legendary, departing midfielder Xavi Hernandez into the fray on 56 minutes to see out the victory and claim the 24th trophy of his exceptional career.

Williams’s header, 11 minutes from the end, was barely a blemish on the Catalonians’ fantastic evening.

Spain U21 international Williams was born in Bilbao to a Ghanaian father and a Liberian mother. The 20-year-old featured 19 times in La Liga this season as Athletic registered a seventh-placed finish.