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Copa del Rey

  • January 19, 2012
  • • 20:30
  • • Estadio de Mestalla, Valencia
  • Referee: José Luis Paradas Romero
  • • Attendance: 39000
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Copa del Rey Preview: Valencia - Levante

Copa del Rey Preview: Valencia - Levante

Ever Banega - Valencia

Los Che will be hoping to bounce back from an insipid defeat against Real Sociedad at the weekend and get one over on their city rivals


PROBABLE LINEUPS


VALENCIA



Alves
Bruno, Rami, Ruiz, Mathieu
Banega, Topal
Feghouli, Jonas,
Alba
Soldado

LEVANTE


Munua
Venta, Ballesteros, Nano, Del Horno
Torres, Farinos
El Zhar, Barkero, Juanfran
Kone

Victor Ruiz, Jonas and Jordi Alba are all set to return to the Valencia line-up after being rested for Saturday's defeat to Real Sociedad. Roberto Soldado also makes a return after serving a one-match suspension.

Miguel misses out with a hamstring injury, with Bruno likely to be retained at right-back ahead of Antonio Barragan. Also ruled out is young striker Paco Alcacer, who suffered a muscle tear while playing for the B-team.

Meanwhile, skipper David Albelda is suffering from flu symptoms and is a doubt for the match.

Levante coach Juan Ignacio Martinez will be without Cape Verde midfielder Valdo, who has been sidelined for upto four weeks with a hamstring injury.

Defender Nano, who agreed a move to Chinese side Guizhou Renhe earlier in the week, is expected to partner Sergio Ballesteros in the heart of the Levante defence. Long-term injury absentee Juanlu remains on the sidelines.


DID YOU KNOW?
  • Valencia are on a three game winless streak in all competitions.
  • Prior to Saturday's defeat to Real Sociedad, Los Che had won five matches on the bounce at the Mestalla, scoring 16 goals and conceding just one in the process.

  • Unai Emery's side are on a five-game unbeaten streak against Levante (W3 D2) - a run that stretches back to January 2008.
  • Levante have lost their last seven matches away from home.
  • Ivorian striker Arouna Kone (pictured) is the east coast club's leading scorer this season with seven goals.
  • Should Levante get through to the semi-finals, they will face the winner of the Real Madrid-Barcelona tie.

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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
1Diego AlvesGoalkeeper
19BarragánDefender
4Adil RamiDefender
18Víctor RuizDefender
18Jordi AlbaDefender
-AlbeldaMidfielder
24Tino CostaMidfielder
-Pablo HernándezMidfielder
7JonasStriker
11Pablo PiattiStriker
9Roberto SoldadoStriker
30GuaitaGoalkeeper
2BrunoDefender
20Ricardo CostaDefender
-Ever BanegaMidfielder
-Mehmet TopalMidfielder
8Sofiane FeghouliMidfielder
20Aritz Aduriz ZubeldiaStriker
-K. NavasGoalkeeper
-Javi VentaDefender
18BallesterosDefender
22Gustavo Daniel CabralDefender
12Juan García GarcíaDefender
10IborraMidfielder
-Xavi TorresMidfielder
-PallardóMidfielder
-BarkeroMidfielder
-Roger MartíStriker
9Arouna KoneStriker
-Gustavo MunúaGoalkeeper
7NanoDefender
-Asier Del HornoDefender
-José Marco HigónMidfielder
8FarinósMidfielder
25Nabil El ZharMidfielder
11Rafa JordáStriker
Players to Watch
Roberto Soldado
Roberto Soldado
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 9
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The talismanic Spaniard was sorely missed last weekend, as Los Che looked lethargic and toothless in attack against Real Sociedad. His return is a big boost for Unai Emery, who will want a clear advantage to take into the return leg.
Ballesteros
Ballesteros
Position: Defender
Squad Number: 18
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
Levante's remarkable first-half of the season has been underpinned mainly by a robust defence, led by skipper Ballesteros. The 36-year-old will have to use all his experience to keep one of Europe's most prolific strikers in Soldado quiet, and give his side a fighting chance in the second leg.
Prediction
After a difficult week, Valencia will be desperate to return to winning ways and quell murmurs of discontent among the home faithful. Soldado's return gives the home side a clear edge, and they should win this with something to spare.
Editor's Prediction

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