Real Madrid vs Rayo VallecanoLa Liga, KO: 21:00 May 25, 2023, Estadio Santiago Bernabeu
Only pride is at stake as Real Madrid host Rayo Vallecano in their penultimate La Liga fixture on Thursday. Things have been rough for Los Blancos lately but with the Santiago Bernabeu remaining a fortress, they should have the upper hand over Vallecano, who are poor on their travels.
Given their high standards over the years, this has been a disappointing campaign for Real Madrid. Despite securing the Copa del Rey title, they barely gave champions Barcelona a fight in the La Liga race and were thrashed out of the Champions League by Manchester City.
With only two games left this season, all that is left to play for is pride and Real Madrid will be looking to end the campaign on a positive note. Carlo Ancelotti’s men head into Thursday’s penultimate fixture off the back of a 1-0 defeat to Valencia last Sunday.
While Real Madrid have undoubtedly fallen short of their high standards this season, the Santiago Bernabeu has remained a fortress. They have won four of their last five home matches with a 6-0 thrashing of Real Valladolid and a 4-2 victory over Almeria among their results in that run.
It has been yet another unremarkable campaign for Rayo Vallecano, who look set to finish in the bottom half of the table. However mathematically, there is still an outside chance of a European finish as they sit four points behind seventh placed Athletic Bilbao with two matches left to play.
The problem for Rayo Vallecano is that they have struggled for to find their best form in recent weeks. Andoni Iraola’s men have lost three of their last four matches and suffered a 2-1 home defeat to Espanyol in their previous La Liga fixture.
Rayo Vallecano have been poor travellers throughout the season and are winless in their last seven away matches. They have suffered five defeats in that run and were beaten 3-1 by Real Betis in their previous La Liga fixture on the road.
How the bookies view it
Real Madrid have been installed as overwhelming favourites among the bookies with a home win priced at 3/4 by 8/11. An unlikely victory for Rayo Vallecano is valued at 15/4 by bet365 while a draw is set at odds of 3/1 by Unibet.
Recent head to head
Rayo Vallecano ran out 3-2 winners in the reverse fixture back in November. However, Real Madrid had won nine of the previous 10 meetings, including five straight victories at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Players to watch
Karim Benzema has 17 La Liga goals this season, five behind top scorer Robert Lewandowski, and will be looking to make a late play for the Pichichi. The French striker has found the net in two of the last three meetings with Rayo Vallecano and is priced at 5/4 by bet365 to maintain his scoring run.
Having endured an injury hit campaign, Raul De Tomas appears to be slowly rediscovering his form in recent weeks. The striker has found the net in two of the last three matches and is priced at 19/5 by William Hill to get on the score sheet on Thursday.
Anything else catch the eye?
There were over 3.5 goals in the reverse fixture and a similar outcome is priced at 19/10 by BetVictor. Over 2.5 goals is valued at 8/11 by bet365 while Unibet is also offering odds of 8/11 on both teams to score.
Real Madrid have scored in both halves in five of their last six La Liga home matches and can be set for a repeat at 6/4 with BoyleSports.
This La Liga match between Real Madrid and Rayo Vallecano will be played on May 25, 2023 and kick off at 21:00. Check below for our tipsters best Real Madrid vs Rayo Vallecano prediction. You may also visit our dedicated betting previews section for the most up to date previews.