LaLiga Matchday 13: Real take on Rayo in Madrid derby
League leaders Real Madrid will look to continue their unbeaten start to the campaign as they face off against local rivals Rayo Vallecano on Monday.
Second-placed Barcelona are just one point off the pace and can go top with a win when they host Almeria two days earlier.
Sevilla are in the relegation zone but there is no reprieve for the struggling side with a derby clash against high-flying Real Betis up next.
Elsewhere, fifth-placed Real Sociedad and third-placed Atletico Madrid host Valencia and Espanyol, respectively.
Game of the week: Rayo Vallecano vs Real Madrid (Monday, 8pm)
Real are yet to taste defeat in 12 LaLiga games this season — and history suggests they are likely to extend that run against Vallecano.
Since January 2000, Los Blancos have registered a 90.5% win rate in this fixture (19 wins, one draw, one defeat) — only against Granada (94.4%) do they have a better record over that period.
However, Carlo Ancelotti's men have kept just two clean sheets in the league this term and Rayo — who have won their last two — will fancy their chances of getting on the scoresheet this Monday.
Barcelona vs Almeria (Saturday, 8pm)
Barca may not be able to match Real's unbeaten league run — but they have yet to lose to their next opponents Almeria in 12 meetings (10 wins, two draws).
The Blaugrana also boast a superb defensive record in the Spanish top flight this term, conceding just four goals in 12 games. They have faced just 86 shots — their lowest tally since the 2011-12 season (62).
La Union have not registered an away win in LaLiga since February 2015, losing 12 times and drawing once since then.
They are unlikely to end that run at Camp Nou having lost all of their previous six league visits to the ground, conceding three or more goals in each of the last three.
Real Betis vs Sevilla (Sunday, 8pm)
Sevilla have historically had the upper hand in this derby, winning 49 and losing 30 of the 102 LaLiga clashes to date.
Additionally, they have won each of the last three league meetings with Betis and were beaten in just one of the previous 13 away from home (five wins, seven draws).
However, Manuel Pellegrini's men come into the game in fine form, having enjoyed their best start to a season since 1963-64 (23 points from 12 games).
Sevilla, on the other hand, have mustered just 10 points thus far, their lowest tally since 1999-2000 (nine) — when they were relegated.
Real Sociedad vs Valencia (Sunday, 3.15pm)
Sociedad have tailed off after a fine run of form — winning five league games in a row before losing their last two.
However, Valencia have been poor of late as well, failing to win any of their previous four fixtures (two draws, two defeats), with both losses also coming in their last two outings.
Gennaro Gattuso will hope Samu Castillejo can maintain his strong record against Sunday's opponents, having managed two goals and two assists in his last four top tier meetings with La Real.
Los Che must be wary of complacency late in the game though, having conceded a league-high 43% of their goals (six of 14) in the final quarter of matches.
Atletico Madrid vs Espanyol (Sunday, 1pm)
Third-placed Atleti are nine points off top spot — but will hope to spark a consistent run of form with a home victory over Espanyol.
Under Diego Simeone, the capital club have won eight of their 10 home league games against Sunday's rivals (one draw, one loss).
Diego Martinez's men are stubborn opponents, however. No side in LaLiga has drawn more often (five draws), with four coming in their last six outings.
However, Martinez is winless in four games against Atleti as a manager (one draw, three defeats) — he only has a worse record against Real Madrid (five defeats in five games).
The weekend's other games
Girona vs Athletic Bilbao (Friday, 8pm)
Getafe vs Cadiz (Saturday, 1pm)
Real Valladolid vs Elche (Saturday, 3.15pm)
Celta Vigo vs Osasuna (Saturday, 5.30pm)
Villarreal vs Mallorca (Sunday, 5.30pm)