Real Madrid vs Valencia predictions: Los Blancos struggling to find spark
- Real Madrid have not scored more than twice in any of last seven league games
- Valencia arrive managerless after a run of just one win in 10 LaLiga outings
- Recommended bet: Real Madrid to win and under 3.5 goals
Gennaro Gattuso lasted only a little over seven months as Valencia manager and his sacking earlier this week came with Los Che sitting just a point above the relegation places.
Next up for a Valencia team struggling for confidence comes a daunting trip to Real Madrid, who have their own problems as they try to chase down Barcelona at the top of LaLiga.
Carlo Ancelotti’s hosts did the LaLiga and Champions League double last season but now find themselves lagging behind Barcelona as they look to retain their domestic title.
A stalemate on home soil had Los Blancos supporters seething last weekend as Real Madrid failed to score with any of their 20 shots on goal against Real Sociedad, and Valencia will be hoping they can prove to be just as frustrating to the Bernabeu crowd.
Defenders Lucas Vazquez, Ferland Mendy, Daniel Carvajal and David Alaba could all miss out against Valencia after Mendy was recently sidelined for two months with a hamstring injury.
There is an outside chance that Alaba and Carvajal could return but it is likely that Ancelotti will again have to improvise at full-back given the potential absence of four players in that position.
Midfielder Eduardo Camavinga could again fill in at left-back with Aurelien Tchouameni potentially returning from a calf injury to take Camavinga’s place in the centre of the park.
Valencia will be without midfielder Nicolas Gonzalez with a foot problem, while reserve goalkeeper Jaume Domenech is a long-term absentee with a medial collateral ligament injury.
Full-back Thierry Correia remains a major doubt after missing the last four matches.
Real Madrid come into this match having slipped off the title pace after winning just three of their last seven LaLiga matches — which includes defeats at top-seven pair Villarreal and Rayo Vallecano and home draws with third-placed Real Sociedad and 12th-placed Girona.
However, their record against the struggling sides remains impeccable, with Ancelotti’s men winning each of their other seven matches against teams in the bottom eight, scoring an average of 2.57 goals per game.
They also face a Valencia side who are plummeting towards the relegation positions on the back of a run of just one win in their last 10 LaLiga outings, losing at 17th-placed Valladolid in their most recent outing.
This is unlikely to be the most aesthetically pleasing match, with Real Madrid struggling to find their best form and Valencia managerless after sacking Gennaro Gattuso.
And while the visit of a limited Valencia side should see Real Madrid get back to winning ways, it is likely that Valencia’s interim manager, Salvador Gonzalez Marco, will aim to shut up shop and keep things respectable.
That likely lack of ambition makes under 0.5 Valencia goals a sensible addition to Bet Builder selections but a slightly out-of-sync Real Madrid side may also fail to fire on all cylinders.
Ancelotti’s men have failed to score more than twice in any of their last seven La Liga outings and while still comfortably strong enough to collect all three points, Real Madrid may fail to sparkle in doing so.