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Primera División

  • December 22, 2012
  • • 19:00
  • • Estadio La Rosaleda, Málaga
  • Referee: Alejandro José Hernández Hernández
  • • Attendance: 28004
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Malaga - Real Madrid Preview: Los Boquerones look to close gap on visitors

Malaga - Real Madrid Preview: Los Boquerones look to close gap on visitors

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Manuel Pellegrini's side can move within two points of the struggling Castilian giants in the Primera Division standings with victory at La Rosaleda on Saturday

  PROBABLE LINEUPS


MALAGA

Caballero
 Gamez, Demichelis, Onyewu, Monreal Iturra, Camacho
Joaquin, Isco, Eliseu
 Santa Cruz


REAL MADRID


Casillas
 Arbeloa, Pepe, Ramos, Coentrao
 Khedira, Alonso
 Di Maria, Ozil, Ronaldo
 Benzema


Malaga will be without captain Weligton against Real Madrid, after the defender picked up his fifth yellow card of the season in the 2-0 win over Sevilla.

Oguchi Onyewu is likely to deputise for Weligton at the back, while Julio Baptista and Jeremy Toulalan are also sidelined.

Real Madrid defender Fabio Coentrao picked up a muscle problem in the 2-2 draw with Espanyol and is a minor doubt.

Raphael Varane, Raul Albiol and Gonzalo Higuain remain absent, but Karim Benzema (ankle) is available.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Malaga have won just three of their last 12 matches in all competitions (W3, D5, L4).
  • The Andalusians have lost their last five encounters with Real Madrid across all competitions.
  • Malaga have been drawn with Porto in the Champions League round of 16.
  • Real Madrid have won just two of their last five away matches in all competitions.
  • Los Merengues will face English giants Manchester United in the Champions League round of 16 on February 13 and March 5.
  • Cristiano Ronaldo (pictured, right) has scored four goals in his last five outings for Real in all competitions.

Players to watch

R. Santa Cruz

Position: Attacker

Games: 11

  • 3
  • 0
  • 0
The Paraguay international could again get the nod over Javier Saviola to lead Malaga's attack, owing to his greater aerial ability. The 31-year-old will look to take advantage of the vulnerability Real have shown at the back in recent matches.

K. Benzema

Position: Attacker

Games: 13

  • 8
  • 1
  • 0
The Frenchman has struggled for form this season, netting just three goals in 13 appearances in La Liga. With Gonzalo Higuain still missing out through injury, Benzema will need to do more as the focal point of Real's attack and help claw back the 13-point deficit to Barcelona.

Editor's Prediction

Malaga are in a decent run of form and will consider this a great opportunity to topple Real, who are in disarray on and off the pitch. Injuries, loss of form and dressing-room squabbles have all but ended the Blancos title challenge, and they could drop more points here.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Málaga

Real Madrid

Wins
1
0
4
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Málaga Club de Fútbol MAL
Málaga Club de Fútbol Málaga
Draw
Real Madrid Club de Fútbol RMA
Real Madrid Club de Fútbol Real Madrid
33%
59%

Top 3 Predictions

Málaga Club de Fútbol MAL
1 - 3
Real Madrid Club de Fútbol RMA
Málaga Club de Fútbol MAL
2 - 1
Real Madrid Club de Fútbol RMA
Málaga Club de Fútbol MAL
1 - 2
Real Madrid Club de Fútbol RMA

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