Real Madrid plays host to Valencia for the second time this season as the club looks to keep a two-match win streak going.
These two clubs last met in a 4-1 road loss for Real at the Mestalla earlier this season in November. Carlos Soler scored his first career hat trick, which was all from penalties in that match.
Real is currently sitting tied on points with Barcelona, who has already played and obtained three points this weekend. The clubs are still eight points out of first-place Atlético with Sevilla hot on Real’s tails trailing by just a point after going perfect in its last five matches.
Valencia has had a mediocre season themselves after a disappointing offseason where the club sold several quality players such as Dani Parejo and Ferran Torres. This season sees Javi Gracia’s club sitting around mid-table tied on points with Getafe and Cadiz.
Real has fended off defeat at home against Valencia in the last 12 matches, which dates back as far as 2008.
Real Madrid still have a handful of injuries which now includes Marcelo and Marvin since the Getafe match earlier this week. Sergio Ramos, Eden Hazard, Alvaro Odriozola, Fede Valverde, Eder Militão and Rodrygo all remain out. Toni Kroos returns to the squad after serving suspension last match while Lucas Vazquez and Dani Carvajal are both returning from injury.
Valencia will likely be without winger Denis Cheryshev, defenders Cristiano Piccini, Mouctar Diakhaby, Eliaquim Mangala and goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen.
The lone suspension for the match is Valencia defender Hugo Guillamon.
Courtois; Carvajal, Varane, Nacho, Mendy; Modric, Casemiro, Kroos, Vazquez, Vinicius, Benzema
This scenario assumes that both Vazquez and Carvajal are ready to start upon return. Kroos was suspended so he should ready to go.
It will also be intriguing to see if Marco Asensio returns to the bench now that Vazquez has returned and is likely not having to play right back.
Domenech; Correla, Gabriel, Ferro, Gaya; Wass, Soler, Racic, Guedes; Gomez, Vallejo
Real Madrid—Valencia 2-1
This should be an interesting match as Real is looking to flip the script after a significant loss earlier in the season. Real has won three of its last five matches so the club will want to keep up the good work despite a continued list of injuries.
Valencia has conceded over 30 goals this season and has actually conceded more goals than the club has scored. With three center back options missing, it will be a bit tougher on an already defensively questionable team.
Real will hopefully be able to pull through a win at home as the points are going to be crucial moving on given how extensive Atletico’s gap has been. If the club cannot keep up with Atletico, it will at least be looking to outperform the tying Barcelona and the streaking Sevilla.