While on paper this game looks straight-forward for Real Madrid, the reality may be somewhat different. The visit of Levante to the Bernabeu comes immediately after an international break in which 17 members of Los Blancos' first team squad were away representing their national teams, while the kick off time of 1pm on Saturday afternoon will not favour the hosts.
Real Madrid players are not used to such early starts, with the side usually only given this slot a couple of times throughout the course of an entire season, and with many players only arriving back in the Spanish capital on Thursday evening, it leaves little time for recovery or preparation.
Bet365, who are live streaming the game for UK-based customers, price a home win at 1/14 (1.07) while Levante have lost each of their eight visits to the Bernabeu in all competitions and are offered at 25/1 (26.00), whilst the draw is priced at 10/1 (11.00).
While we expect a home win it could be less comfortable than the odds suggest, with the international break and early kick off both important factors to consider. The absence of Cristiano Ronaldo, who has scored in eight of the last nine meetings between these two sides, is another negative aspect for the Zinedine Zidane's side and the hosts certainly missed Ronaldo's instinctive finishing in their last game against Valencia.
The price of 5/6 (1.83) for Madrid not to score before 20 minutes is worth considering, and this feels like a solid selection given that it could well take the hosts a while to get into their stride. For slightly higher odds, the price of 11/10 (2.10) for a home win and less than 3.5 goals also seems a sensible option, and this bet has paid out in the last three meetings between these sides at the Bernabeu.