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Real Madrid vs Espanyol, 2017 La Liga: Match Preview

The return of the might Welsh man.

Club Atletico de Madrid v Real Madrid CF - La Liga Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Two games behind but one point ahead. This is what Real Madrid is currently dealing with in the La Liga Standings. Leading bitter rivals Barcelona by a narrow point, Real Madrid will look to extend their margin with a win this Saturday night against Espanyol.

Real Madrid will be coming off of a dramatic 3-1 Champions League Round of 16 match against Napoli that saw them courageously come back from an early 1-0 deficit to win the game. Zinedine Zidane and company will look to continue their meager winning streak to four matches with only two days of rest. However, with news of Gareth Bale returning to the pitch, Real Madrid look to have all the energy they will need in order to face off against Espanyol.

Espanyol will travel to the Santiago Bernabeu Saturday night with over a week’s worth of rest. Having played their previous game last Friday against Real Sociedad, which resulted in a 2-1 loss, Espanyol will enjoy having the extra rest against their competitor who currently only have Thursday and Friday to prepare for the weekend match.

Espanyol will be missing six players due to lingering injuries: Papakouli Diop (Wound), Pablo Piatti (Head Injury – possible return for Saturday), Leo Bapitstao (Heel Bone Injury), Javi Lopez (Muscular Problems), Victor Sanchez (Muscular Problems), and Marc Navarro (Hamstring Injury).

Navas, Modric and Benzema will rest for Real Madrid.


Real Madrid: Casilla; Carvajal, Pepe, Varane, Marcelo; Kroos, Casemiro, Kovacic; Vazquez, Ronaldo, Morata

Espanyol: Diego Lopez; Navarro, David Lopez, Reyes, Aaron; Javi Fuego, Jurado, Reyes, Hernan Perez, Gerard; Caicedo

Player to Watch: There is only one player that fans should keep their eyes on this Saturday: Gareth Bale. After returning to full-team training earlier this week as well as being left out of the club’s Champions League match, the Welsh Star will be ready to explode when he hits the pitch Saturday against Espanyol.

X-Factor: Real Madrid’s defense will have a tough task this weekend, defending Espanyol’s top goal scorer Felipe Caicedo. The large Ecuadorian has the knack of finding a physical battle and winning it, suggesting that Madrid’s back line will end the night with a few bruises and knocks.

Time and Location: Saturday, February 18, 2017, 16:15 CET at the Santiago Bernabeu in Madrid, Spain

Staff Predictions

Result (1) Score (2) Goal Scorers (3) Total Score
Result (1) Score (2) Goal Scorers (3) Total Score
Om RM Win 2-1 CR7, Ramos; Higuaín 42
Kiyan RM Win 3-1 Benz, CR7, Asensio; Pjanic 45
Timm RM Win 2-1 (RM win extra time) CR7, Ramos; Dybala 41
Mike - - - 34
Lucas RM Loss 1-2 CR7; Higuaín, Dybala 26
Nate RM Win 4-2 -CR7x2, Bale, Morata; Higuain, Dybala 47
Marc - - - 3
Lewis - - - 10
Tommy RM Loss 1-2 Benz; Higuaín, Mandzukic 19
Naguib RM Win 2-0 CR7, Bale 29
Vicki - - - 1
Ondra RM Win 2-0 CR7, Ramos 18
Jack RM Win 2-2 (RM win on pk's 4-3) CR7, Ramos; Dybala x2 6
Matt RM Win 1-0 CR7 8
Sam RM Win 2-1 - 1
José RM Win 3-1 CR7 x2, Morata; Mandzukic 3

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