Bilbao agree to sign Benat from Betis

Athletic Bilbao have agreed to sign midfielder Benat Etxebarria, a product of the Basque club's youth academy, from Real Betis on a five-year contract, the La Liga clubs said on Wednesday.

The 26-year-old playmaker, who is on the fringes of the Spain squad and has made four appearances for the world and European champions, will be officially presented on Thursday, Bilbao said on their website.

A gifted ball player and a free-kick specialist, Benat was a key performer in the Betis side that finished seventh in La Liga and qualified for the Europa League last season.

Bilbao, whose squad is made up entirely of players of Basque origin, ended an erratic campaign in 12th and will not be taking part in European competition next term.

Neither club gave financial details of the deal but Benat is valued at 12 million euros on website, which tracks football transfers.