With 11 games to play and just Sevilla and Elche having a game in hand, the league has now taken full shape on what we should expect. Atletico Madrid lead proceedings at the top with 63 points, four ahead of Barcelona who have 59 points. Real Madrid will believe they are still in the race despite being six points behind the table-toppers. Elsewhere, only four points separate 20th and 16th, meaning anything can still happen.
Image Copyright – Steve Haag Sports
Friday 19 March
Real Betis 17/20
Real Betis’ five-match winning streak came to an end last week when they suffered a narrow 1-0 defeat against their bitter rivals Sevilla. Betis were still very impressive in the derby and didn’t deserve to be on the losing end. Levante, on the other hand, bounced back to winning ways when they beat Valencia by 1-0 at home last time out. Both sides have been decent since the beginning of the year and I wouldn’t want to back against them, especially when they are not playing the big three. Back these sides to cancel each other.
Saturday 20 March
Athletic Bilbao 8/10
We kick off the Saturday fixtures with a low-key affair as the out-of-form teams battle it out. Bilbao have been one of the most inconsistent sides this season and their form says it all, winning nine, drawing seven and losing 11, while scoring 37 and conceding 31. Fortunately for them, their opponents, Eibar, are the worst team in the league at the moment and have won one game in their last 18 league matches. Back the hosts to win here.
Celta Vigo 32/10
Real Madrid 8/10
Real Madrid’s title hopes are getting slimmer each gameweek as the defending champions continue to drop silly points. Zinedine Zidane’s men have won one of their last three league matches and that form is not good enough, especially when you are six points behind a team that keeps winning. There are only 11 games left to play, and for me, Madrid will finish third behind Atletico and Barcelona. In terms of this game, back them to get maximum points.
Huesca have fought really hard in the second half of the season but their poor first stanza might cost them a place in La Liga next season. The hosts are rock-bottom at the moment but are one win away from moving out of relegation. With 11 games to play, every match should be taken as a must-win. Tough one to call but I’ll go with Huesca here.
Real Valladolid 34/10
After two consecutive defeats, Sevilla bounced back to winning ways and they did it in style, winning in the derby. The Sevillistas look set for top four again this season as they are six points ahead with a game win hand, at the time of writing. Valladolid are just above the red zone and at the moment, any point they get is very crucial. It will be a difficult game, but back Sevilla to make it two wins on the spin.
Sunday 21 March
We start the Sunday matches with an early kick-off at the Alfonso Perez where Getafe welcome Elche. Getafe are not 100% out of the relegation battle and beating Elche will boost their survival hopes even further. The hosts have 28 points while Elche have 24 which makes it a must-win for either team. I’ll side with Getafe here.
Villarreal’s impressive Europa League win has given them a boost in the league as well. The Yellow Submarine desperately needed those two wins as they are falling out of top six. The only way to play Champions League football for Unai Emery is winning the Europa league as they have dropped out of the top four race. Cadiz have done incredibly well this season. From being relegation favourites at the start of the season, they are now nowhere near the red zone. Back the Yellow Submarine to continue their winning streak.
Valencia host Granada in what use to be a very big game in previous seasons where both teams were gunning for top four. Now, these sides have become just ordinary midtable teams. Granada will wish their Europa League form was translated to the league as well because in La Liga, they are really struggling. Confidently back a draw here.
Atletico Madrid 1/3
Atletico Madrid may not have the big lead they had a few months back, but they are still big favourites for me to snatch the title. With just 11 matches to play, Atleti need to target winning 10 and that will give them the long-awaited title. Diego Simeone will know it’s one game at a time and winning this match will bring them closer. Back Atletico Madrid to Win to Nil at 8/10.
Real Sociedad 5/2
This is probably the hardest game of the weekend. Barcelona have worked really hard to be where they are right now after being completely out of the race. At some stage, Barca were looking like they won’t even get top four but now they will feel confident about doing the unthinkable and winning the league after being more than 14 points behind. I said it before and I will say it again, if there is ever a team that can overturn a 14-point deficit, it’s Barcelona. Back the visitors to win here and continue to pile pressure on Atleti.
Villarreal Win 7/20
Valencia vs Granada – Draw 24/10
Barcelona Win 19/20
Written by Banele Pikwa