Preview: Real Betis vs. Valencia

Preview: Real Betis vs. Valencia

Valencia will travel to Real Betis on Sunday evening knowing that a victory would guarantee their status in Spain’s top flight for another campaign.

The visitors are currently 15th in the La Liga table, two points clear of the relegation zone, while Real Betis are sixth, and Manuel Pellegrini’s side will end the season in that position regardless of what happens on the final matchday.

Real Betis have now claimed a top-six finish in La Liga in each of the last three seasons, and it has been another productive campaign for Pellegrini’s side, who will once again compete in the Europa League next term.

A total of 59 points from 37 matches has left them in sixth position, four points behind fifth-placed Villarreal and nine clear of Osasuna in seventh. Earlier this year, the possibility of a top-four spot opened up, but they have ultimately fallen well short, sitting nine points off fourth-placed Real Sociedad.

The Green and Whites can be pleased with their season, though, and they have been in strong form over the last month, winning three of their last five matches, suffering only one defeat in the process.

Real Betis will enter this match off the back of a 2-1 success at Girona last Sunday, with Borja Iglesias’s second-half brace securing all three points for the visitors.

El Glorioso actually suffered a 3-0 defeat to Valencia in the reverse match earlier this season, but they were 4-1 winners in the corresponding fixture during the 2021-22 campaign.

Valencia would definitely be safe with a victory on Sunday, but a defeat would make them extremely vulnerable and open up the prospect of finishing in 18th position in the table.

Espanyol and Elche have already been relegated to the Segunda Division, while 18th is currently occupied by Real Valladolid, but Celta Vigo, Almeria, Getafe and Cadiz are also all vulnerable heading into a fascinating final matchday, with all eyes on the bottom of the division.

There is no getting away from the fact that it has been a hugely disappointing campaign for Valencia, who have not played outside of Spain’s top flight since the 1986-87 season.

However, Ruben Baraja’s side have only lost one of their last five league games, recording two wins in the process, while they have picked up four victories from their last eight matches, which has left them outside of the relegation zone heading into the final matchday.

Valencia scored a last-gasp leveller against Espanyol at Mestalla last time out to claim a vital point and relegate their opponents in the process, and they will now be looking to record just their fourth away league victory of the campaign to confirm their top-flight status.

Real Betis La Liga form:

Valencia La Liga form:

We say: Real Betis 1-1 Valencia
Valencia have a recent away victory over Real Betis to their name, triumphing in April 2019, but it is difficult to back them to win this match, having only claimed three victories on their travels this term. A point could be enough to keep Valencia in the division, and we are expecting the spoils to be shared here.

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