Our football writer previews matchday 27 of the 2016/17 Spanish La Liga campaign.
The title race in La Liga is looking ever-so-tight with Barcelona leading the standings on 60 points, with Real Madrid just a point behind with a game in hand over their long-time rivals. Sevilla failed to keep the gap at two points from the top as they were held at Alaves by a 1-1 scoreline.
The Sevillistas remain third in La Liga and face newly-promoted opposition for the second consecutive week. The race for fourth place is also looking tough with Atletico Madrid on 49 points, Real Sociedad on 48 and Villarreal on 45. Let’s see where we can make some extra money in these final 11 rounds of fixtures!
Friday 10 March
Espanyol 21/20 | Draw 23/10 | Las Palmas 26/10
Espanyol come off their eighth loss of the campaign, going down 2-0 to Villarreal at the Estadio de la Ceramica – formerly named El Madrigal. Espanyol remain ninth on the table, with the teams around them failing to capitalise on their missed chance.
Las Palmas ended their winless run of five matches with an emphatic come-from-behind victory over Osasuna, beating the Reds 5-2. Las Palmas sit 12th on the log, three points off the top half. However, Quique Setien’s side have won just once in 12 meetings on the road this season. These sides drew 0-0 in the reverse tie but Espanyol are tipped to make home advantage count here.
Saturday 11 March
Valencia 9/20 | Draw 7/2 | Sporting Gijon 11/2
Valencia suffered their eighth loss of the season away from home when they were crushed by a 3-0 scoreline at Atletico Madrid. The Bats failed to hit the ground running and conceded as early as the 10th minute through Antoine Griezmann. Sporting Gijon’s dismal run continued with coach Rubi’s side conceding their 12 goal in four matches as they fell to a 1-0 home defeat to Deportivo.
Gijon lie deep in the relegation places, being six points away from the green zone. Valencia have won their last three games at the Mestalla, including a 2-1 win over Real Madrid. Back the home win and include in all multiples.
Sevilla 4/10 | Draw 34/10 | Leganes 13/2
After a massive setback on Monday night in their 1-1 draw at Alaves, Sevilla will return to the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan where they will look to get back to winning ways. Jorge Sampaoli’s men failed to make it five wins a row, but could stretch their unbeaten run to seven matches in La Liga.
Leganes have been blowing hot and cold at the moment. Away from home, though, Lega have failed to win in nine matches, dating back to October last year. Sevilla edged this tie 3-2 last time and should do enough to claim another victory – also one for the multiples!
Malaga 19/20 | Draw 9/4 | Alaves 3/1
Malaga suffered their third consecutive loss in La Liga when they fell to a 1-0 defeat at Athletic Bilbao last weekend. Malaga have won just once in 13 league matches, while Alaves have found some form in recent weeks.
In the last four games, Alaves held Sevilla, lost to Granada but beat both Valencia and Deportivo. The last time these sides met, they cancelled each other out in a 1-1 draw. However, Alaves could earn more than just a point here. For that reason, back the visitors on the Win/Draw Double Chance at 15/20.
Granada 11/2 | Draw 29/10 | Atletico Madrid 5/10
Granada have somewhat improved in recent weeks. Despite falling to yet another defeat last weekend, their performances have been convincing. Granada are unbeaten in four home matches, winning three on the bounce.
Atletico Madrid have been hot and cold this season, but you would have to go back to 2016 to find the last away game that Diego Simeone’s side have lost. Off the back of a 3-0 win over Valencia, Atleti will look to make it back-to-back wins and hope that the teams above them can drop points to keep their title hopes alive. With UEFA Champions League coming thick and fast, Granada are tipped to earn a point.
Sunday 12 March
Real Sociedad 21/20 | Draw 47/20 | Athletic Bilbao 51/20
Real Sociedad kept their top four hopes alive with a hard-fought 3-2 victory at Real Betis last Friday. That’s three games that the Royals have not tasted defeat as they look to make it back-to-back wins. Athletic Bilbao left it late against Malaga last time out as a Raul Garcia penalty in the 72nd-minute proved to be the game’s only goal.
Bilbao are seven points off Sociedad and will be hoping to complete the double over their opponents, after winning 3-2 at the San Mames Stadium. Bilbao’s away form isn’t too convincing, winning just twice on the road, losing eight times with two draws. Sociedad are in great form and should be backed at just over even money.
Deportivo 17/2 | Draw 5/1 | Barcelona 1/4
Pepe Mel has made an instant impact since taking over Deportivo with the relegation-threatened side earning a point against Atletico Madrid and earning their first away victory of the campaign, beating Sporting Gijon 1-0. They face Real Betis at home in midweek before this clash against Barcelona. Luis Enrique’s side have a clash of their own in midweek as they face PSG in the UEFA Champions League.
In the league, though, Barca are in superb form, winning six on the trot and humbling Celta Vigo to a 5-0 defeat last time out. The Catalans lead the standings by a point, with Real Madrid having a game in hand over them. Barca have scored 76 goals this campaign, but have been shaky at the back at times. I’m going with Barcelona to Win & Both Teams to Score at 19/20.
Celta Vigo 17/10 | Draw 21/10 | Villarreal 33/20
Celta Vigo suffered the biggest defeat of the weekend as they were bulldozed by Barcelona, losing 5-0 at the Camp Nou. That result leaves Celta winless in three La Liga matches. Villarreal come to town in some decent looking form.
Away from home, the Yellow Submarine are undefeated in five matches across all competitions, keeping four clean sheets and winning three on the trot. Villarreal thumped Celta 5-0 in the reverse fixture, but I doubt things will be so straightforward this time. I’m not usually a fan of the Double Chance market, but getting on Villarreal to Win or Draw seems well worth a punt at 4/10.
Real Madrid 1/7 | Draw 7/1 | Real Betis 15/1
Real Madrid will look to keep their unbeaten home run intact when they host an out-of-sorts Real Betis side. Madrid rested a number of key players in their 4-1 victory at Eibar last time out with the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale, Toni Kroos, Alvaro Morata and Marcelo all not playing a part in the match.
Betis have managed to win just one of their last six away La Liga games, suffering defeats in the other five. Madrid smashed Betis by a 6-1 scoreline in the reverse fixture and should pummel the travellers once again. Back Zinedine Zidane’s side on the (-1) Handicap at 7/20.
Monday 13 March
Osasuna 23/10 | Draw 47/20 | Eibar 23/20
Gameweek 27 action ends with Osasuna looking for their first home win of the campaign when they host Eibar at the El Sadar Stadium. Osasuna suffered their sixth defeat in a row last time out as Las Palmas found their feet in the second half to end the game at 5-2. Eibar were also humbled by a huge scoreline last weekend as Real Madrid ran out 4-1 winners on their turf.
Eibar did, however, win this fixture 3-0 away from home in the Copa del Rey, which should boost their confidence for the clash. Osasuna have conceded 30 goals at home this season – no side has conceded more. The stats look decent enough for Eibar to pick up all three points here.
QUAD @ 15/2
Espanyol Win 21/20
Valencia Win 9/20
Sevilla Win 4/10
Real Sociedad Win 21/20
Written by JesseNagel @Hollywoodbets