La Liga: Espanyol VS Valencia – Match preview

La Liga: Espanyol VS Valencia – Match preview

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13 May 2022
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Espanyol vs Valencia

Sitting 13th ahead of this round, there’s very little left for Espanyol to play for, yet they could be motivated by the fact another win against Valencia would hand them their first league double since 2007/08 after they won 2-1 in December’s reverse fixture.

Espanyol

Espanyol will be grateful for the faltering form of others as they secured their La Liga status last weekend despite being in the midst of a winless league run stretching five matches. Conceding before half-time in the last four fixtures within that stretch highlights how Espanyol have been slow to get going in recent encounters, and there’s now just one other La Liga side who has conceded more first-half league goals this season (25). Sitting 13th ahead of this round, there’s very little left for Espanyol to play for, yet they could be motivated by the fact another win against Valencia would hand them their first league double since 2007/08 after they won 2-1 in December’s reverse fixture. With Espanyol avoiding defeat in each of their last three final home La Liga matches of the campaign, history looks to be on their side.

Valencia

Similar to their opponents, losing Copa del Rey finalists Valencia are stumbling towards the end of the season and are now without a win in seven league outings. Manager Jose Bordalas admitted after their latest defeat at home to Real Betis (3-0) that his tenth-placed side are finding it “difficult to focus” with very little left to play for, but if they don’t improve over these next two matches, then consecutive bottom-half league finishes looks the likely outcome. That’s not what Valencia officials would have hoped for when appointing Bordalas 12 months ago, and in recent weeks they’ll most likely be disappointed by the blunt nature of the club’s attacking displays. ‘Los Murciélagos’ have scored just four league goals across the last nine game weeks which is the fewest of any La Liga side during that period.

 

Raul de Tomas scored in Espanyol’s last league outing, and in their reverse H2H victory – both strikes came from the penalty spot. Valencia’s Omar Alderete also scored in the reverse, although Bordalás will likely be more worried about the defender keeping his cool after Alderete picked up four yellow cards across his last six competitive appearances. Only the league’s top two have averaged more away points after conceding first than Valencia.

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