The visitors are on an impressive unbeaten run in La Liga and they will be aiming to the transfer that form to the Copa Del Rey when they visit Madrid on Tuesday
Slowly but surely things seem to be coming together for Quique Sanchez Flores at Espanyol and after a poor start to the campaign the Catalans have put together a run of seven matches without defeat.
Saturday saw them overcome Leganes 3-0 with all three strikes in the second half to move up to 11th in the table and record another clean sheet, their fourth in a row.
Now the former Watford manager brings his side to the Spanish capital to face second tier Alcorcon who themselves enjoyed a 5-1 win over Real Oviedo at the weekend.
The Madrid based outfit sit 15th in the Segunda Division, although the table is so tight that Alcorcon are just four points off a play-off place. While the Copa Del Rey provided Los Alfareros with their greatest ever moment, beating Real Madrid 4-0 in 2009, the competition is not likely to be a great priority for Alcorcon.
Espanyol however, are likely to take the tournament seriously; with the team not threatened by relegation and with no European distractions it could be the perfect launch-pad for the Catalans' ambitious owners.
Paddy Power offer a home win at 23/10 (3.30) while the draw can be backed at 11/5 (3.20) yet the smart money should go on an away win at 6/5 (2.20). Los Pericos will want to get the tie won before the second leg, and even if the manager makes a few changes to the starting line-up, a shrewd summer of investment has left the visitors with a decent squad, more than capable of establishing a first leg lead.
With Espanyol keeping six clean sheets in their last seven matches, the hosts should find it difficult to break them down, while up-front the Catalans boast five forwards who have scored this season meaning that even if there are changes, the visitors should be able to record a win.
|Espanyol to win at 6/5 (2.20) for a 2pt stake with Paddy Power|