Real Madrid will be looking for an immediate response when they travel to Villarreal on Saturday at 3:15 PM (UK time).
Los Blancos suffered a humiliating 4-1 defeat at the hands of Valencia prior to the international break thanks to a hat-trick of Carlos Soler penalties and a Raphael Varane own goal, Karim Benzema having originally given Real Madrid the lead.
As a result, Zinedine Zidane’s men now sit fourth in La Liga, four points adrift of leaders Real Sociedad and two behind this weekend’s opponents.
Villarreal, on the other hand, have lost just once all season and are currently enjoying a six-game unbeaten run in La Liga. Unai Emery’s side beat Getafe 3-1 last time out with goals from Paco Alcacer, Manu Trigueros and Gerard Moreno doing the damage.
So, can Real Madrid get back to winning ways? Or will Villarreal continue their long unbeaten run?
Where to watch Villarreal vs Real Madrid on TV:
- UK: La Liga TV
- US: beIN Sports
Where to live stream Villarreal vs Real Madrid:
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*Geo restrictions apply, 18+ only, must have a funded account, BeGambleAware. All odds and offers within this article are accurate at the time of writing (11:30, 19/11/2020)
Villarreal & Real Madrid’s previous line-ups:
- Villarreal (vs Getafe): Asenjo; Mario, Albiol, Torres, Alfonso; Parejo, Iborra, Trigueros; Moreno, Alcacer, Gomez.
- Real Madrid (vs Valencia): Courtois; Vazquez*, Varane*, Ramos*, Marcelo; Valverde*, Modric; Asensio, Isco, Vinicius Jr; Benzema*.
Juan Foyth and Jaume Costa are both doubtful while Alberto Moreno is out until March with a knee injury.
Zidane’s squad is being stretched to the limit with no fewer than 10 players expected to miss the trip to Villarreal: Raphael Varane, Sergio Ramos, Lucas Vazquez, Ferland Mendy, Karim Benzema, Federico Valverde, Casemiro, Eden Hazard, Eder Militao and Alvaro Odriozola.
Players to watch:
- Villarreal: After grabbing his fourth La Liga goal of the season against Getafe prior to the international break, Gerard Moreno followed up with the equaliser during Spain’s 1-1 Uefa Nations League draw with Switzerland recently. The 28-year-old has four goals and an assist in 10 career games against Real Madrid to date. Although he’s only been on the winning side in one of them, Villarreal’s form coupled with the Los Blancos injury crisis could tip the scales in this one. Moreno will be eyeing up that threadbare defence with serious intent on Saturday.
- Real Madrid: With so many potential absences, it’s hard to see who exactly is going to pose questions of the Villarreal defence for Zidane on Saturday. One such player he’ll be looking to is Brazilian forward, Vinicius Jr. The 20-year-old has netted three goals across all competitions so far this season and is one of just four Real Madrid players to net more than once in La Liga. However, Vinicius is without a goal in his last five outings — Zidane cannot afford a repeat of the Valencia defeat here and will be praying for a turnaround in fortunes for Vinicius and his Real Madrid squad.
La Liga 2019/20 recent form:
- Villarreal: WWDWD
- Real Madrid: LWWLW
Scoreline prediction: Villarreal 2-1 Real Madrid
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