High-flying Real Betis can make a big step towards European qualification by beating direct rivals Valencia, while los Che hope to build on the impressive victory over BATE Borisov and finally win away in La Liga as well.
Real Betis didn’t need a lot of time upon their return to Spanish La Liga to earn a tag of the most unpredictable team in the elite division, with los Verdeblancos staying true to the trend this season as well. The team had done well to win three of their first four games, similar to last season, but heavy defeats to Malaga and Atletico Madrid, in which they conceded no less than eight goals, proved that Betis may not have enough quality to match the best sides in the league. Pepe Mel’s side did bring one point from their last league game against Osasuna, but getting a good result against Valencia may prove to be a difficult task, especially if we take into account that los Che won three of last four games at Estadio Benito Villamarin.
With so many selection problems at the start of the season and a hectic schedule to begin with, I was certainly not surprised to see Valencia struggle in the opening exchanges. However, as the injured players started returning, the team began to get shape and los Che are slowly raising their game. Mauricio Pellegrino’s side have now won four of their last five games, with victories over Athletic Bilbao and BATE Borisov proving the team can grind out results when needed just as well as they can win the games in which they dominate. Boosted by the first triumph on the road, los Che should go into this game high on confidence and with belief into their abilities, which is likely to help them record a good result in Seville.