La Liga Preview: Betis v Malaga
Goal.com previews the weekend meeting between Pepe Mel's hosts, who are currently in freefall after a promising start, and Manuel Pellegrini's big-spending visitors
By Karthick Arvinth
Isidoro, Dorado, Ustaritz, Nacho
Iriney, Benat, Canas
Castro, Pereira, Pozuelo
Gamez, Demichelis, Mathijsen, Monreal
Joaquin, Cazorla, Isco
Roque Santa Cruz remains on the sidelines as Betis look to reverse a torrid run of form that has seen them lose six games on the bounce.
Last weekend’s narrow defeat at Racing Santander means Pepe Mel's promoted side sit just four points off the relegation zone. The coach may persist with the same team that played on Sunday, with defenders Javi Chica and Mario remaining injury doubts.
Malaga coach Manuel Pellegrini has no new injury concerns ahead of the Andalusian derby, with Willy Caballero and Apono expected to shake off minor knocks sustained in Sunday’s 2-1 win over Espanyol. The game comes too soon for Brazilian midfielder Julio Baptista however, who sits out with a foot injury.
||DID YOU KNOW?|
- Real Betis were league leaders a little over a month ago, having won all four of their opening matches
- Betis’ last home win against Malaga was a 3-0 triumph in January 2004.
- Seville-based Betis hold the distinction of being the first team from Andalusia to compete in La Liga.
- Malaga have avoided defeat in their last five league encounters with Betis (W3 D2 L0) – a run that stretches back to late-2005.
- Spanish midfielder Santi Cazorla is Malaga’s leading scorer this season with four goals.
- Malaga became one of the richest clubs in La Liga following last year’s takeover by Sheikh Al-Thani, a member of the Qatari Royal Family.
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Top 3 Predictions
Betis 1-2 Malaga
- 18.75 %
Betis 0-1 Malaga
- 17.61 %
Betis 0-2 Malaga
- 14.21 %
|Spain - Primera Division (LIGA)||Mar 31, 2014||Betis 1 - Malaga 2|
|Spain - Primera Division (LIGA)||Nov 3, 2013||Malaga 3 - Betis 2|
|Spain - Primera Division (LIGA)||Feb 24, 2013||Betis 3 - Malaga 0|
|Spain - Primera Division (LIGA)||Sep 29, 2012||Malaga 4 - Betis 0|
|Spain - Primera Division (LIGA)||Mar 31, 2012||Malaga 0 - Betis 2|
|Apr 13, 2014||Betis 0 - Sevilla 2||LIGA|
|Apr 5, 2014||FC Barcelona 3 - Betis 1||LIGA|
|Mar 31, 2014||Betis 1 - Malaga 2||LIGA|
|Mar 27, 2014||Levante 1 - Betis 3||LIGA|
|Mar 23, 2014||Betis 0 - Atletico Madrid 2||LIGA|
|30||Fabricio Agosto Ramírez||Goalkeeper|
|-||Jefferson Antonio Montero||Midfielder|
|21||Sebastián Fernández Miglierina||Striker|
With the continued absence of Roque Santa Cruz, Pereira remains a key goal threat for Betis, and his team need him to start finding the target if they are to break their current run of six consecutive defeats.
The club's most expensive signing has so far lived up to his billing, producing a series of superb performances even as his team have in general struggled for consistency. His creativity remains vital for Malaga to achieve what their ambitious owners desire this season.
After a promising start Betis are suffering from a desperately poor run of form, and are unlikely to be given sympathy by a Malaga side still with much to prove after their expenditure in the summer.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed