Two extremely interesting matches in the Spanish La Liga take place this weekend. The first is Sevilla vs. Barcelona, and the second, the clash between Villarreal and the current leaders, Atletico Madrid. Here are the BetXChange‘s previews for both matches, along with the predictions and picks.
Sevilla vs. Barcelona
The Rojoblancos have a nasty schedule, as they head for Dortmund following this match, but we are more than sure that it won’t change anything in their approach on Saturday night. The loss against Borussia was the first after nine straight wins, eight of them without a goal allowed, which is amazing.
Julen Lopetegui’s side is excellent when protecting its own net, and there aren’t too many teams in entire Europe in this aspect of play, Of course, bad days can happen to everyone, and Sevilla’s one was against Borussia at home less than two weeks ago.
Barcelona oscillates a lot, and is very unstable this season. Messi is on the decline, which frustrates both him and the locker room, where certain players aren’t very happy with the Argentinian’s behavior.
Blaugrana’s defense is a big problem for Ronald Koeman. It allowed a goal in all but one in the past nine events, which was the latest one against Elche at home. But just to be clear, they weren’t confident in this match either.
Sevilla and Barca played recently, in the semifinals of Copa del Rey. Rojoblancos won that match 2-0, with Kounde and Ivan Rakitic scoring a goal each, and securing a nice lead before the rematch at Camp Nou.
We expect this match to be conservative when it comes to both gameplans. Sevilla defends superbly, while on the other side, Koeman won’t risk that much, but will wait for some mistake of the rivals. Therefore, a moderate efficiency, 2 or 3 goals is the best choice here. Odd at BetXChange are at 1.05.
Villarreal vs. Atletico Madrid
If it weren’t for Villarreal’s recent poor form in the domestic championship, this team would be in the race for the Champions League, Yet; one loss and five draws, have severely endangered their prospects for reaching the most prominent European football competition.
The Yellow Submarine is a team that awaits the opponents’ errors and is very patient during the match. They don’t have some prolific strikers but are very accurate once getting a chance to hurt the rivals.
The previous four games all saw a moderate efficiency, 2 or 3 goals, which only backs our claim that they play tactical and cautious football.
Atletico Madrid was 10 points ahead of all the title contenders two weeks ago. They now have just three. Draws against Celta and Levante, with the loss at home to Levante in their second head-to-head game in just a few days was a major setback for Diego Simeone’s side.
On top of everything, Atletico lost in the Champions League to Chelsea with the Blues outplaying the Madridians in every single aspect of the game. That is why many of the fans expressed their anger and disbelief following that match, suggesting that this is probably going to be another frustrating season for them.
This match will be a tough one for predicting the winner, yet we aren’t going to focus on that but on goals. Under 2.5 is the perfect pick here, with both Villarreal and Atletico setting ultra-defensive tactics, trying to hurt the rivals from the counter-attacks or set pieces. Under 2.5 goals are 0.55 at BetXChage.