Prediction and odds for the game: Real Madrid (4/11) vs Valencia (15/2)
We are backing Real Madrid half-time/full-time at odds of 11/10
When: Saturday 8 January 2022, Kick-off 20:00
Where: The Santiago Bernabeu
On Saturday night, La Liga leaders Real Madrid face a potentially tricky home match against Valencia at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Los Blancos are five points clear of second-place Sevilla in the race for the Spanish top-flight title. However, the Andalusians also have a game in hand on the men from Madrid.
Carlo Ancelotti’s team recovered from a shock 1-0 defeat at Getafe in their last league match by recording a 3-1 win at lower league Alcoyano in the Copa del Rey on Wednesday night.
The defeat against local rivals Getafe ended a 16-match unbeaten run in La Liga, 13 of which the home team has won.
Real Madrid are formidable opposition on home soil especially, as Los Blancos are 19 matches unbeaten on home soil in La Liga. A 0-0 draw against Cadiz in their last league match on home soil ended a run of four straight home wins in the league. The game did see Los Blancos keep their third straight clean sheet in La Liga at the Bernabeu.
Forward Luka Jovic and full-back Dani Carvajal look unlikely to feature in the game. Out of favour winger, Gareth Bale also looks unlikely to be in the home team’s squad.
Like their hosts, Los Che recorded a midweek Copa del Rey win, as Jose Bordalas’ team won 2-1 at Cartagena. The victory followed a surprising 2-1 home defeat by Espanyol. The loss came after the late dismissal of Hugo Duro.
The defeat rather dented Valencia’s hopes of breaking into the top six or even top four of La Liga this season. The visitors are now two points outside the top six and four points outside the top four.
The visitors will be hoping to bounce back, as prior to their defeat against Espanyol, they were unbeaten in seven La Liga matches, including having recorded three straight league wins.
One facet of their game that needs to improve if they are to make the top-six is their defensive play. Los Che have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last five matches in the Spanish top-flight.
Bordalas’ team have recorded back-to-back away wins in La Liga at Celta Vigo and Levante. However, Los Che has won just three of their last 19 matches away from home in the Spanish top-flight.
Valencia are still without centre-back Gabriel Paulista due to injury, while Hugo Duro misses out through suspension after his red card last time out in La Liga.
Real Madrid are strong favourites for victory, so the home win offers little value. However, Jose Bordalas teams tend to make life difficult for every opposition. We are backing this to be a relatively low-scoring encounter. Therefore, we are backing under 2.5 goals scored. We are also backing Real Madrid to be winning at half-time and full-time.
Our Tips: We are backing under 2.5 goals scored at odds of 11/8 and/or Real Madrid half-time/full-time at odds of 11/10. (All odds are taken from Bet365).[geosnippet id=3620]
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Will Real Madrid boost their title hopes or can Los Che shock the league leaders?