La Liga Betting Preview: Back Malaga to beat Racing Santander by at least two goals

Spanish football expert Phil Kitromilides believes the struggling visitors are in for a tough night in Andalucia against the side looking to qualify for the Champions League
Malaga's excellent run of form came to a staggering halt last week with their shock 2-0 home defeat to Real Betis. Poor defending and an inability to take their chances cost Manuel Pellegrini's side the points on that occasion but they will be confident of getting back to winning ways against a Racing team who are beginning to look doomed to play in the second tier of Spanish football next season.

A home win tonight is priced at 4/11 (1.36) with Bet 365, while Racing who have the lowest numbers of away victories in the division, with just a solitary win on their travels this season, are on offer at 15/2 (8.50) to claim three points.

Malaga's home form has generally been strong this season, with the Andalucians having won 10 matches at La Rosaleda (only Real Madrid and Barcelona have won more home games). The big-spending outfit's weakness is their defence with a total of 20 goals conceded at home, the joint third highest in the division.

So this might make the 5/6 (1.80) offered on both teams to score tempting, especially when considering that this bet has paid out in five out of Malaga's last seven games. Yet Racing's lowly total of 14 goals in 14 away matches does not inspire too
much confidence.

Instead, back Malaga -1 at 11/20 (1.55) which may not be the biggest price in the world, but given Racing's appalling away form, and the fact that three of Malaga's last four home wins have been by two or more goals, it looks a solid selection.

For a value bet try backing one of the best players in La Liga to open the scoring, Santi Cazorla. The diminutive midfielder is always a threat especially from free kicks and is priced at 5/1 (6.00) to break the deadlock.

Malaga -1 at 11/20 (1.55) with Bet365
Santi Cazorla to score first at 5/1 (6.00) with Bet365

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Phil Kitromilides is a sports broadcaster working on radio and TV in London and Madrid, you can also follow Phil on Twitter