Bilbao Athletic

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Description:
Bilbao Athletic (sometimes referred to as Athletic Bilbao B) is a Spanish football club based in Bilbao, in the autonomous community of the Basque Country. The reserve team of Athletic Bilbao, it was founded in 1964, and currently plays in Segunda División B - Group 2, holding home matches at Instalaciones Athletic Bilbao.

Unlike the English League, reserve teams in Spain play in the same football pyramid as their senior team rather than a separate league. However, reserves cannot play in the same division as their senior team. Therefore, Bilbao Athletic are ineligible for promotion to the first division. Reserve teams are also no longer permitted to enter the Copa del Rey. In addition, only under-23 players, or under-25 with a professional contract, can switch between senior and reserve teams.

History

The Bilbao Athletic name was first used in 1938 during the Spanish Civil War, when both La Liga and the Copa del Rey were suspended; several of top Athletic players subsequently joined the Euskadi XI. This team was put together at the suggestion of José Antonio Aguirre, the president of the Basque Country, himself a former Athletic Bilbao footballer.

The team went on tour to raise funds for the Basque cause, and also played in Europe and Mexico. However, the Campeonato de Vicaya continued to be played. With their best players on tour with the Basque national team, Athletic Bilbao could only field weakened sides and, as a result, chose to enter under the name Bilbao Athletic....
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