Real Madrid hosts Betis at the Bernabeu as Los Blancos show serious intentions of throning the league for the first time since 2016. The teams will run out on the pitch of Santiago Bernabeu on Saturday at 20:00 CET.
Zinedine Zidane returned the previous season in order to use his authority to put things into place with the anarchy seemingly taking over at the Bernabeu. While things are far from perfect, Zizou is balancing in maintaining order and bringing in results, even though the performances are more often worrying than not.
The biggest issue so far is the new signings who were unable to fit in. And while Eder’s common absence from the starting eleven is justified due to immovable pair of Ramos and Varane, Eden Hazard and Luka Jovic are starting to worry the demanding crowd of Santiago Bernabeu.
However, the performances at home are more than satisfying for Madrid as a whole. After the opening day embarrassment in a draw against Valladolid, Real Madrid more or less easily won their following four matches at home.
Regaining the stability
Things are looking up for recently often cloudy offices of Valdebebas as even Luka Jovic scored his debut goal after ten appearances in 5-0 thrashing versus Leganes. Eden Hazard is looking better and better, and it seems as if the fitness issues are now behind the Belgian superstar.
Even the ridiculously awful injury list is now shortened, with Asensio, Nacho, and the usual suspect – Gareth Bale – missing with Ferland Mendy slowly making his return to action.
After converting Valverde into an important first team member, Zidane now looks to have found his starting right-wing, too. Rodrygo Goes showed up in a dominant display on Wednesday and now looks far ahead of the competition including Vinicius, Vasquez, and Brahim Diaz. The team can always rely on their best scorer and player this season – Karim Benzema, as the Frenchman scored seven league goals so far.
Rising hope in the South
Betis, on the other hand, witnessed a smaller earthquake – or at least an explosion of happiness – when Nabil Fekir scored the winning goal against Celta to mark Betis’ only third win of the season so far.
The Sevillian team is sitting at 15th, with just 12 points in 11 matches. Sacking Quique Setien looks like a mistake in hindsight, given that he played some beautiful football with Betis, despite the results sometimes suffering last season.
The departures of Pau Lopez, Junior Firpo, and most importantly, Lo Celso also hit the team hard. Borja Iglesias is yet to justify his price tag of €28 million as the striker scored only once in La Liga this season. The big-name signing was shadowed by Loren Moron who scored seven league goals in just as many starts.
A name we mustn’t forget – Joaquin Sanchez – is playing as good as ever, with the veteran carrying the creative burden, even at 38 years of age.
Given that Real Madrid is relentless at home, and Betis won just one point in five away matches this season, a visit to Bernabeu could prove to be very painful for Rubi’s men. Even though the preferred approach might be to sit back, Betis simply isn’t that kind of a team, and they will attack at some point of the match because it’s in the team’s nature. This should result in a fun match and tons of goals with Real Madrid’s dominant win.
Prediction: Over 3.5 goals. Make sure to bet on La Liga matches with 22Bet!