La Liga news

Benat wants Betis future resolved

February 7, 2013
By Dermot Corrigan, Spain Correspondent

Highly sought-after Real Betis midfielder Benat Etxebarria says he wants to get his future sorted quickly to avoid a Fernando Llorente-style exit from the club.

Benat Etxeberria's contract at Real Betis is ticking down but he is not keen on a move away
GettyImagesBenat Etxeberria's contract at Real Betis is ticking down but he is not keen on a move away

Reported Chelsea, Manchester City and Bayern Munich target Benat has just 18 months left on his current contract, and negotiations with the cash-strapped Andalucian club appear deadlocked.

The €15 million-rated playmaker says he would ideally prefer to stay at Betis, but is worried that if things drag on much longer he could end up in a situation similar to that of Llorente. The Athletic Bilbao striker has spent most of the season on the bench, as well as falling out with the side's president and fans, after deciding not to sign a new deal with the club.

"I would like to stay," Benat said. "The club made their proposal, and we made a different one. We will meet to talk in February or March. I would like to decide on a new contract or to leave before June. It is not nice to be in Llorente's situation."

Benat, who won his first cap for Spain last summer, was not in La Roja's squad for Wednesday's friendly against Uruguay in Qatar. He has been substituted in four of his last six La Liga games as Betis' Champions League qualification challenge has stuttered and they have been eliminated from the Copa del Rey.

The Basque admits that his form has not been good lately, and suggests the uncertainty over his future is not helping.

"Things are not going well for me, I am not enjoying things the same," he said. "I am physically fine, but my passing is not the same. Anxiety to play well is taking a toll. I notice the crowd grumbling, although I try to keep concentrated."