Malaga remain unbeaten in La Liga
Chances were few and far between at San Mames as Athletic Bilbao played out an uneventful 0-0 draw with Malaga.
Aritz Aduriz hit the side-netting for the home side while Eliseu came closest to breaking the deadlock after the interval, but the La Liga match was otherwise a forgettable affair. The only bright spot for Malaga is that they remain unbeaten in the league.
The visitors came into the match on the back of a superb start to the season, winning three of their four La Liga fixtures and beating Zenit St Petersburg in the UEFA Champions League in midweek. Athletic had not been as successful with just one win from four attempts, and they could only draw with Israeli side Hapoel Kiryat Shmona in the Europa League.
If the crowd had been expecting an entertaining match at San Mames, they would have felt let down by the final whistle. Markel Susaeta fired over for the home side from 18 yards with nine minutes on the clock. Athletic goalkeeper Raul Fernandez was then tested by a strike from Isco, while Joaquin Sanchez also put a header wide as Malaga tried to get things moving. However, it was Athletic who had the best chance of the half five minutes before the interval when Susaeta curled a cross into the area, but Aduriz could only find the side-netting from a narrow angle.
The second half showed few signs of improvement with no shots from either team in the opening 25 minutes. Malaga finally mustered a tame effort from Isco from inside the box, which was comfortably held by Raul after 74 minutes. Two minutes later, Eliseu produced the best shot of the night with a powerful curling strike from 30 yards which was palmed away by a diving Raul.
Malaga goalkeeper Willy Caballero was then brought out of his slumber eight minutes from time to parry an attempted chip from Susaeta. Yet despite the late signs of life, no goal came, much to the frustration of fans.