Valencia will be looking to continue their encouraging start to the 2021-22 La Liga campaign when they welcome an out-of-form Alaves outfit to Mestalla on Friday night.
The home side have picked up four points from their first two league matches of the season, but Alaves are yet to get off the mark this term and currently sit 19th in the table on zero points.
Valencia’s struggles last term saw them post their lowest position since the 1987-88 campaign, with 13th representing a disappointing season for the Spanish giants, and it was actually their worst placing at this level of football since finishing 14th in 1987-88.
Los Che lost 15 of their 38 league matches last term, and the club’s financial problems mean that it has been a quiet transfer window, but they have managed to retain their star players approaching the deadline, and head coach Jose Bordalas has a very talented squad to work with.
Bordalas, who impressed during his five years at Getafe, was appointed head coach in May, and the 57-year-old has helped oversee a positive start to the season, with four points from two matches leaving them sixth.
Valencia opened their 2021-22 campaign with a 1-0 win over Getafe on August 13 before claiming a point against Granada on Saturday, with Carlos Soler scoring a late equaliser from the penalty spot.
The six-time Spanish champions have actually shared the points in their last three La Liga matches with Alaves, but they were strong at home last term considering their final position, picking up 31 points from 19 matches.
Alaves, meanwhile, are in their sixth straight season at this level of football, but they were close to being relegated last term, finishing 16th, just four points above the relegation zone.
The Basque outfit’s squad has undergone a huge change this summer, with a number of players both arriving and moving on, and it will be fascinating to see what they can achieve this term.
Javier Calleja’s side struggled on the opening weekend of the 2021-22 campaign, suffering a 4-1 home defeat to Real Madrid, but the result at home to Mallorca last time out was certainly more disappointing.
Indeed, Alaves will know that they need to pick up points against the teams expected to be around them in the table this season in order to stay in the league, but they suffered a 1-0 home defeat to Mallorca.
As mentioned, El Glorioso have drawn their last three league matches with Valencia, but they have not beaten Friday’s opponents in Spain’s top flight since January 2019.
Valencia La Liga form:
Alaves La Liga form:
We say: Valencia 1-0 Alaves
Valencia’s problems have not evaporated despite a positive start to the season, but we can see Los Che moving into seven points in the league on Friday. Alaves picked up a point at Mestalla last term, but they have struggled early on in 2021-22, and we are predicting a narrow home success here.