Real Madrid will be bidding to bounce back from their heavy defeat to Manchester City in the Champions League when they resume their La Liga campaign away to Valencia on Sunday night.
Carlo Ancelotti’s side are currently second in the table, two points clear of third-placed Atletico Madrid, while Valencia occupy 14th, three points clear of the relegation zone heading into the final straight.
Six-time La Liga champions Valencia have not operated outside of Spain’s top flight since 1987, so it would be a huge story if they were relegated to the Segunda Division for the 2023-24 campaign.
Los Che have found a strong run of form in recent weeks, winning three of their last five, suffering only one defeat in the process, but they are still very much in the relegation mix, sitting 14th in the table, three points clear of 18th-placed Getafe with four games left.
A win for Ruben Baraja’s side this weekend would put them in a strong position, though, and they should be full of confidence after two impressive results in a row, holding high-flying Villarreal to a draw on May 3 before recording a 2-1 victory over Celta Vigo last time out.
It did appear that the points would be shared in Vigo, with Haris Seferovic cancelling out an early opener from Justin Kluivert, but Alberto Mari came off the bench to win it for Valencia in the final exchanges.
Los Che have picked up 25 points from their 17 home league games this season, while six of Real Madrid’s seven league losses this term have come on their travels, which will hand Baraja’s team confidence heading into one of the biggest matches on the La Liga calendar.
Preview: Valencia vs. Real Madrid – prediction, team news, lineups
Real Madrid will have undoubtedly been wounded by their 4-0 loss to Man City in the second leg of their Champions League semi-final on Wednesday night; the tie was delicately poised following a 1-1 draw in the first leg, but Pep Guardiola’s side proved to be far too strong in the return.
Los Blancos managed to win the Copa del Rey at the start of this month, but they have fallen short in La Liga, with Barcelona’s 4-2 victory over Espanyol last weekend confirming the Catalan outfit as champions.
Real Madrid are now in a battle with Atletico for second position, currently sitting two points above their rivals, and Ancelotti’s team will be determined to finish in the spot behind Barcelona, having not been lower than second in Spain’s top flight since the 2018-19 season.
The capital giants have dropped points in 12 of their 34 league games this season, which has left them 14 points behind Barcelona, and they have incredibly not managed to put together back-to-back wins in Spain’s top flight since the middle of February.
Real Madrid recorded a 1-0 victory over Getafe in the league last weekend, while they have won each of their last four league games against Valencia, including a 2-0 success in the reverse game at Bernabeu in February.
Valencia La Liga form:
Real Madrid La Liga form:
Real Madrid form (all competitions):
We say: Valencia 1-1 Real Madrid
Real Madrid will be determined to bounce back from their disappointing performance and result against Man City, but Valencia are fighting for their lives towards the bottom and will enter this game in strong form. It would not be a surprise to see an away win here, but we believe that the points will be shared.