Basque task too much for Osasuna

Primera Division Spanyol

As Real Madrid and Barcelona start to think about Champions League semi-finals next week, Tobias Gourlay's still giving Spain's domestic fixtures his full attention.

 

Real Madrid v Real Betis

Saturday 17:00 (Live on Sky Sports 4)

Real 1.3 Betis 12.0 draw 6.4

 

Real Madrid have won 13/14 home matches and they have won by two or more goals in 11/14 home matches.

 

Real Betis have the best away record of anyone outside the Big Two (W7-D2-L6). Our concern here is that they have still conceded 29 times in those matches - that's  only once fewer than Celta Vigo and Sevilla, who are bottom and second bottom of the Liga away table.

 

Dig a little deeper and you'll find Pepe Mel's men have struggled against good home teams: W1-D1-L6 against the top 12 in the Liga home table; W6-D1-L0 against the  rest.

 

Are Real a good home team? They've won 45/53 under Mourinho and, most recently, 11/14 by two goals or more.

 

Xabi Alonso is suspended this weekend. He has always seemed pretty crucial to Real's success, the link between strong(-ish) defence and devastating attack, but they  can do without him, winning 6/6 such Liga and Champions League games at the Bernabeu this term.

 

Recommended Bet

Back Real Madrid -1.5 @ 1.8

 

Barcelona v Levante

Saturday 19:00 (Live on Sky Sports 4)

Barcelona 1.23 Levante 16.5 draw 7.8

 

Levante lost 5-1 at Real Madrid a fortnight ago. They followed up with a 4-0 home defeat to Deportivo La Coruna.

 

Thank goodness they are safely in mid-table, 13 points clear of the drop zone.

 

Barcelona have won 14/14 at home to anyone who isn't Real Madrid this season. They have been ahead by half-time in 12/14.

 

Messi, Xavi, Busquets, Mascherano and Puyol should all sit this one out, but recent results suggest the understudies can handle games like this one.

 

Recommended Bet

Back Barcelona/Barcelona @ 1.7

 

Valencia v Malaga

Saturday 21:00 (Live on Sky Sports 4)

Valencia 1.67 Malaga 6.4 draw 3.9

 

Valencia and Malaga notched their half-centuries of points last weekend and are now alongside each other in the Europa League positions.

 

Los Che might feel they have rather more to play for than their visitors: Malaga are banned from European competition next season, pending an appeal.

 

The important thing for us is that since Malaga were handed the ban in December there has been an upturn in goals: 5/6 away matches have produced three or more.

 

Valencia have scored twice or more in 13/16 at the Mestalla, where each of the last three games have brought Over 2.5 Goals in total.

 

Jonas is the one to watch: the Brazilian, who starts wide but likes to move inside, has found the back of the net in 7/8 Liga and Champions League appearances in the  last two months. You might get 2.5 about him scoring anytime this weekend.

 

Recommended Bet

Back Over 2.5 Goals @ 1.9

 

Osasuna v Real Sociedad

Sunday 18:00 (Live on Sky Sports 1)

Osasuna 3.25 Sociedad 2.48 draw 3.45

 

Osasuna have not scored in 356 minutes of league football at the Reyno de Navarra.

 

Zero goals simply won't be enough against Real Sociedad, who have ripped into better sides with 23 goals in 11 away matches (W6-D4-L1).

 

Asier Illarramendi's suspension might send you running for a bit of Asian Handicap cover, but records show Sociedad have scored 11 goals in three games without him  this season.

 

If Ruben Pardo misses out as well - he's rated doubtful at the time of writing - that's when the draw becomes a concern.

 

Recommended Bet

Back Real Sociedad @ 2.48

 

Sevilla v Atletico Madrid

Sunday 20:00 (Live on Sky Sports 1)

Sevilla 2.56 Atletico 3.1 draw 3.45

 

Sevilla have won their last seven Liga home matches, averaging three goals per game for the last six.

 

But Atletico are unbeaten in four on the road (W2 D2) and eased concerns about a lack of goals with a 5-0 thumping of Granada.

 

Clean sheets in all four of those away games say the visitors can defend too. Sevilla's six home wins under Unai Emery have come against weaker opposition: ninth- placed Vallecano are currently highest in the table among them.

 

Sevilla were 3-0 up in the city derby with Betis last weekend. The fallout from throwing that lead away is still to come.

 

Atletico's counter-attacking style looks a good fit for Sevilla's more straightforwardly aggressive approach and we're ready to give the visitors a bit of support on  the Asian Handicap.

 

Keep an eye on the Sending Off? market too. This season's three previous meetings of these two brought eight red cards (seven for Sevilla).

 

Recommended Bet

Back Atletico Madrid 0 & +0.5

 

Celta Vigo v Real Zaragoza

Monday 21:00 (Live on Sky Sports Xtra)

Celta 2.0 Zaragoza 4.1 draw 3.6

 

Zaragoza are still the worst team in a major European league in 2013 (W0-D5-L9),

 

But, crikey, Celta Vigo aren't far behind (W2-D3-L9).

 

The result of their Monday meeting might turn on whether Celta (no clean sheets in 11 at Balaidos) can shut out Zaragoza (no goals in 5/7 on the road).

 

Four of Celta's last seven home games have produced three goals or more, but the Big Two were involved in a couple of them and, that pair aside, Celta have conceded  more than once in only 1/13 this season.

 

Ten of the 13 finished with two goals or fewer, while eight of Zaragoza's last ten away games have ended up Under 2.5 Goals.

 

Iago Aspas, Celta's best attacker, is serving the fourth - and final - match of a suspension.

 

Recommended Bet

Back Under 2.5 Goals @ 1.9

 

(Source: Betfair)

 

Bet HERE

 

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