Villarreal vs Espanyol
Villarreal host Espanyol at El Madragil in this week’s Friday night game, a match which the The Yellow Submarine will be looking to win after a disappointing result last week. Much was expected from their trip to newly promoted Real Betis with new signing Roberto Soldado returning to La Liga, but a goal on his debut wasn’t enough to earn his new side 3 points, as Betis found an equalizer in the 87th minute. Espanyol did get off to a winning start to the season however, seeing off Getafe with a 1-0 victory, but looked nervy in defending their early lead despite having an extra man for much of the game. This fixture could go therefore go against the form side, and Villarreal’s impressive home form from last season could be enough to give them the edge.
Prediction: Villareal 2-0 Espanyol
Real Sociedad vs Sporting Gijon
Both these sides started the seasons with goalless draws, but Gijon will arguably be the happier of the two sides with their shutout against Real Madrid. Sociedad’s 0-0 draw away at Deportivo showed signs of promise, but both teams will be looking to do better in front of goal, and build on their otherwise good performances from week 1. David Moyes side will be the favourite for this fixture against newly promoted Gijon, but Los Rojiblancos will be full of confidence after keeping Real Madrid at bay and will hope to match Sociedad all the way.
Prediction: Real Sociedad 1-1 Sporting Gijon
Barcelona vs Malaga
Barcelona went some way to avenging their Super Cup defeat to Athletic Bilbao by beating Los Leones 1-0 in their opening La Liga fixture. Suarez’s 55th minute goal was enough to win a hard fought game, and Barcelona will now welcome Malaga to Camp Nou in search of another 3 points. Malaga will be in search of their first 3 points following another 0-0 draw in La Liga’s opening weekend against Sevilla. Malaga won this fixture last season and another close game could be in order, but Barca fans will expect another victory nonetheless.
Prediction: Barcelona 2-1 Malaga
Celta Vigo vs Rayo Vallecano
Celta will be looking to build on their 2-1 win away to Levante on opening weekend whilst Rayo managed an unexpected point against Valencia at Vallecas, but Celta Vigo fear the trip to Galicia after last season’s humiliating 6-1 hammering at Balaidos. We might not get another 6-1 but two attacking sides should provide an intriguing contest, and last weeks performances suggest we could be in for close game.
Prediction: Celta Vigo 1-1 Rayo Vallecano
Real Madrid vs Real Betis
Madrid’s stuttering start to La Liga with their 0-0 draw at Sporting Gijon has angered fans who understandably expected much more. Rafa Benitez have a chance to redeem themselves at home to another newly promoted side in Betis, but betistenacity in fighting back to earn a draw against Villarreal could pose a threat to Los Blancos. Nothing short of a comprehensive victory will satisfy fans, but at home they should get what they expect, with their team out to prove a point.
Prediction: Real Madrid 3-0 Real Betis