La Liga Preview: Valencia v Real Madrid
Jose Mourinho's men will be looking for a repeat of last season's impressive 6-3 away win versus the hosts when they travel to Mestalla on Saturday evening
By Luke Matthews
Miguel, Ruiz, Rami, Alba
Pablo Hernandez, Piatti, Mathieu
Arbeloa, Ramos, Pepe, Marcelo
Xabi Alonso, Sahin
Ozil, Kaka, Ronaldo
Jose Mourinho will be sweating on the fitness of Cristiano Ronaldo and Alvaro Arbeloa, both of whom returned from international duty with thigh and hamstring strains respectively. However, the two players are expected to shrug off the knocks to start against Unai Emery's men. Angel Di Maria is however out for a month with a knee problem, meaning Kaka will likely start, with Mesut Ozil edged out to the right hand side.
Real Madrid have several players returning from injury including Ricardo Carvalho and Fabio Coentrao, although the pair are likely to sit out the visit to Valencia.
Marcelo will be back in contention following an injury, while Nuri Sahin could start his first game in the white shirt of Madrid.
One man who will not be featuring for Valencia is Sergio Canales, who is on loan from Madrid and will miss most of the season with a serious injury. The home side are also unable to call upon Ever Banega or Hedwiges Maduro.
Despite his double on international duty for Brazil, Jonas is likely to be named as a substitute with Pablo Piatti a candidate to play behind Roberto Soldado. Pablo Hernandez could come into the team on the right wing.
||DID YOU KNOW?|
Valencia have lost their last three meetings against Real Madrid in La Liga, losing 6-3 to Los Blancos the last time the teams met in April.
- The last four encounters between the two sides at Mestalla have produced a total of 23 goals.
- Valencia are unbeaten at home in La Liga this season, winning four and drawing two out of their six games at Mestalla.
- Real Madrid are on a run of seven consecutive wins in La Liga. An eighth would be their best run under Jose Mourinho since the coach took over the club in 2010.
- Los Blancos have scored 39 goals after 11 matchdays, their second-highest tally at this stage of the season since 1950-51, where they had bagged 42.
- Gonzalo Higuain has scored seven goals in seven appearances against Valencia.
|Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|Sign up with bet365 for a free bet up to £200|
|Sign up to Paddy Power for £250 in free bets|
Top 3 Predictions
Valencia CF 1-3 Real Madrid CF
- 20.69 %
Valencia CF 0-3 Real Madrid CF
- 13.18 %
Valencia CF 1-4 Real Madrid CF
- 9.09 %
|Spain - Primera Division (LIGA)||Dec 22, 2013||Valencia CF 2 - Real Madrid CF 3|
|Spain - Copa del Rey (ESPC)||Jan 23, 2013||Valencia CF 1 - Real Madrid CF 1|
|Spain - Primera Division (LIGA)||Jan 20, 2013||Valencia CF 0 - Real Madrid CF 5|
|Spain - Copa del Rey (ESPC)||Jan 15, 2013||Real Madrid CF 2 - Valencia CF 0|
|Spain - Primera Division (LIGA)||Aug 19, 2012||Real Madrid CF 1 - Valencia CF 1|
|Mar 13, 2014||PFC Ludogorets Razgrad 0 - Valencia CF 3||EL|
|Mar 9, 2014||Valencia CF 1 - Athletic Bilbao 1||LIGA|
|Mar 2, 2014||Rayo Vallecano 1 - Valencia CF 0||LIGA|
|Feb 27, 2014||Valencia CF 0 - Dynamo Kiev 0||EL|
|Feb 23, 2014||Valencia CF 2 - Granada 1||LIGA|
|20||Aritz Aduriz Zubeldia||Striker|
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed