Real Madrid vs ValenciaLa Liga, KO: 21:00 Jun 18, 2020, Estadio Alfredo De Stefano
REAL Madrid find themselves five points behind fierce rivals Barcelona in La Liga meaning only a victory will do when they play host to Valencia on Thursday night.
Zinedine Zidane's start-studded side looked at home on Sunday evening when sweeping aside Eibar 3-1 at the Alfredo Di Stefano Stadium – Real's temporary home for the remainder of the season whilst the Santiago Bernabeu undergoes renovation work.
With fixtures coming thick and fast, Los Blancos can ill-afford a slip-up here when presented with the opportunity to reduce the arrears at the top of La Liga back to within two points.
Standing in the Spanish giants way on Thursday night is a Valencia side whose campaign has been plagued with inconsistency and that was evident again last Friday night when Los Che were held to a 1-1 draw at home to local rivals Levante.
Consequently, Alberto Celades' side have now won just one of their last six La Liga matches, however, Valencia will still harbour ambitions of finishing in the top-four.
The men from the Mestalla lie seventh in La Liga but they are only four points adrift of the final Champions League berth and therefore still have plenty to play for between now and the end of the season.
Real Madrid have avoided defeat in their last 13 home fixtures against Valencia and the hosts are heavily fancied to pick up all three points on Thursday night at 4/11 with Bet 365
There is little value in backing a Real Madrid win at 4/11 (Bet 365), however, an alternative angle that I like the look of is the combination of 3+ match goals, 3+ match cards and 6+ match corners which looks nicely priced at 5/6 with PaddyPower.
Our man Kevin Mac cashed in on Real Madrid's ropey rearguard last time out and I wouldn't be surprised to see Valencia make the net bulge here given the superior attacking quality they have compared to that of Eibar.
What's more, Valencia have got on the scoresheet in all but three of their last 28 La Liga assignments and it's also worth noting that both teams have notched in nine of the visitors' last 13 road trips.
Indeed, an away goal may only amount to a consolation, however, 12 of the last 14 fixtures between these two teams has featured over 2.5 goals and Valencia did manage to hit the back of the net in all four of their Champions League games outside of Spain this season.
However, at the other end of the park Valencia are defensively vulnerable – Celades' side have one of the highest goals-against tally away from home in La Liga – and that does not bode well ahead of a tussle with Real Madrid's top-heavy attack.
With that in mind, I'm happy to back at least three match goals here and adding in 6+ corners and 3+ cards looks like a nice alternative angle of trying to squeeze some value out of what is a must-win match for Real Madrid.
It's safe to say that Spanish referees haven't been holding back when it comes to dishing cards since the restart – a minimum of seven cards were shown across each of Tuesday's fixtures – and I like the look of Valencia's Daniel Wass to pick up a caution in this contest at 9/2 with William Hill.
The Valencia utility man has chalked up five yellow cards in 24 appearances this term and if he gets the nod on Thursday night then he could find himself at right-back where he could given the thankless task of trying to shackle the likes of Eden Hazard, amongst others, and trading at 9/2 with William Hill, the ageing Dane looks overpriced to have his name taken.
This La Liga match between Real Madrid and Valencia will be played on Jun 18, 2020 and kick off at 21:00. Check below for our tipsters best Real Madrid vs Valencia prediction.