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Jonathan Cordingley 24th Oct 2013 - 21:37

Round Ten La Liga Betting Previews

Rayo Vallecano v Valladolid, 20:00

Moving up from 19th to 14th position in the standings, Rayo Vallecano (6/5) won their second game in a row and third of the season when defeating Almeria 1-0 on the road last weekend. Galvez (25/1 to score first, 8/1 anytime), with a superb free kick, scored the only goal of the game.

All in all, Rayo looked the more likely winner throughout the game, though once they'd been reduced to ten men I had wrongly assumed that Almeria would win 1-0. Oh well. Wrong, however, I wasn't when offering up a 90 minute draw and both teams to score in Valladolid to the chaps at In-Play Radio last Sunday.

Indeed, although it was as much a case of Sevilla throwing the game away as it was Valladolid (11/5) making a deserved comeback, I was very pleased with a 2-2 draw - earned through superb Manucho (7/1 to score first, 2/1 anytime) and Ebert (9/1 to score first, 10/3 anytime) goals.

In conclusion, Valladolid are without a win in their last six league games, while Rayo have won their last two. Got to go with Rayo and home advantage as such, but I must also point out that Valladolid have won their last three matches against Rayo, recording a 2-1 victory in Madrid last season. All three of those matches saw both teams score and over 2.5 goals, while three out of the last four Rayo home games have also seen three goals or more.

Recommendation: Rayo (6/5)

Worth a punt: Over 2.5 goals (10/11)

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Malaga v Celta, 15:00

Schuster's Malaga (13/20) lost 2-0 to Real Madrid at the Bernabeu last weekend, though it would have been 6 or 7-0 if not for the heroics of their goalkeeper, Willy Caballero. All in all, it's a pity that the Anchovies couldn't score for the Real to win and both to score bet that I recommended, but defeat was, of course, expected.

Celta (4/1), on a rainy Monday night in Vigo, lost 1-0 to Levante in round nine. As usual, they played well but lost - for the fourth time in a row. Their coach, Luis Enrique, has been touted as a future Barca boss, but the chances of such a move become less and less plausible as results continue to deteriorate.

In conclusion, either with the current or a new coach, Celta will win at some point, but away from home and with four defeats in a row we have to expect that streak to continue as morale drops further.

At 13/20, however, I think that Malaga are too short for a single. You should be able to put them in an acca, but as two of Celta's last three away games - in Bilbao and Madrid - have seen both teams score but their opponents win, I've opted for the same again.

Worth a punt: Match Result and Both Teams To score: Malaga (13/5)

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Elche v Granada, 19:00

Winning for the third time in a row, in-form Elche (19/20) impressively went 2-0 up against Betis in Seville, with Manu del Moral (11/2 to score first, 6/4 anytime) and Fidel (10/1 to score first, 7/2 anytime) scoring their goals. Betis did later pull one back (if was offside), but even after being harshly reduced to ten men after Cisma's second yellow card, Elche comfortably held on to win 2-1.

Another team dealt a red card were Granada (3/1), who lost for the third time in four games after a 2-0 defeat to Getafe last weekend - their fourth loss in five on home soil.  Granada were not dominant before Diakhate's dismissal, but it was game over once he'd received his second yellow card for a challenge on Borja.

All in all, given the stats and form reeled off above, I've got to go with a home win in Elche v Granada, but am not sure that the hosts are so attractive odds-on. Nevertheless, Elche to win has to be the call here.

Recommendation: Elche (19/20)

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Levante v Espanyol, 21:00

Winning for the second time in three games, and their first victory since Real Madrid's injury time 3-2 win from a 1-2 deficit, Levante (7/5) had only a handful of shots on goal but won 1-0 at Celta on a rainy Monday night in round nine. Papa Diop (5/1 to score first, 5/4 anytime) scored the winner.

Espanyol (21/10), after losing three games in a row, defeated an Atletico Madrid side that had previously won every game they'd played. Seems 'The FIFA Virus' played a part, but the bad information given in the press that Catalans best player, Sergio Garcia, was out through injury didn't please me after picking Simeone's boys to win! At least it was the Atletico keeper and not Garcia who scored the winner!

In conclusion, although they were unlucky not to beat an out of sorts Real Madrid a couple of weeks ago, Levante have yet to win a league game on home soil in 2013/14, drawing three and losing one. On the other hand, Espanyol, perhaps full of confidence after the scalp of Atletico, have at least managed a win and a draw in four road games.

I want to bet on Espanyol + 1 goal given the above, but at 8/15 it's not doable. The next choice is Espanyol draw no bet at 23/20, and I am tempted by that, but since the last two Levante home games have seen both teams score, the last two Espanyol away have been the same and BTTS being a winner in the last four head to head matches between these two, I've gone for both teams to score.

Recommendation: Both teams to score (19/20)

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Sevilla v Osasuna, 11:00

Emery's Sevilla (4/9) nervously lost a two goal lead to draw 2-2 away to Valladolid last weekend. Bacca (7/2 to score first, 10/11 anytime) opened the scoring with an instinctive finish, whilst left-back Moreno confidently blasted home the second from about twenty yards out. With this result, Sevilla still haven't won a league away game in 2013.

Osasuna (6/1) held firm to draw 0-0 at home to Barcelona in round nine. All in all, it was a good performance from Javi Gracia's charges and they must be given credit. With 19th placed Rayo winning their game at Almeria last weekend, however, Osasuna actually moved down into 18th in the La Liga standings!

In conclusion, Sevilla have beaten Osasuna to nil in each of their last four meetings at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan, but this time we have to factor in that Osasuna will be full of confidence after holding Barca to a draw and winning away at away at Malaga in the round prior to that, while Sevilla will also have played midweek in Europe.

Notably, both teams have scored in all four of Sevilla's La Liga home games this season, while Osasuna have netted in each of their last three away. So, if we put all of the article logic together it appears to lead to the bet below. Fingers crossed.

Worth a punt: Match Result and Both Teams To score: Sevilla (21/10)

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Villarreal v Valencia, 16:00

Although they started brightly, Villarreal (21/20) couldn't create any clear chances, losing out to a well worked goal, defensive blunder and a (harsh) red card in their 2-0 defeat away to Athletic Bilbao last Sunday. The Yellow Submarines still occupy the fourth and final UEFA Champions League berth in the La Liga standings, but lose ground on Real Madrid.

A few steps forward but now one back - that's a fair assessment of Valencia's recent form after a 2-1 home defeat to Real Sociedad last weekend. It must, however, be said that Jonas had a legitimate goal ruled out at 0-0. Otherwise, the Basques were fair winners.

In conclusion, It looks like a second step back for Valencia (5/2), especially as they played in the Europa League midweek, while the Villarreal players will be well rested. Factor in that the Yellow Submarines have won 3/4 home games with their only blemish being a 2-2 draw with Real Madrid (which they should have won) and, on paper, I can't see a better choice here.

Recommendation: Villarreal (21/20)

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Real Sociedad v Almeria, 18:00 - live on Sky Sports 1

Basque outfit Real Sociedad (6/10), who hadn't won a game in nearly two months, unexpectedly repeated their 20/12/13 win at the Mestalla, with Griezmann (5/1 to score first, 5/4 anytime) and Prado each netting in a 2-1 victory over Valencia last weekend.

Almeria (4/1) rode their luck at home to Rayo Vallecano but looked set for a point or more once Rayo were reduced to ten men. However, unlike the earlier Sunday game in Granada which the eleven man team won, Rayo's Galvez scored a stunning free kick to win the game 1-0 for ten man Rayo. It was a result that kept Almeria bottom of the table and still without a win.

In conclusion, sure, this is a Champions League team that should have a little extra confidence after beating Valencia vs a winless team, but Real Sociedad have yet to win a La Liga game after a midweek European fixture - losing 1-0 away to Rayo last time - and I'm deeming this bet worth a punt as a consequence. Pity + 2 (priced at 4/9) isn't doable because that sounds like a very good bet.

Worth a punt: Almeria + 1 goal (11/8)

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Atletico Madrid v Real Betis, 20:00 - live on Sky Sports 1

With a very poor display in which they didn't even have a shot on target, Atletico Madrid (2/7) cost me a few quid after losing - via a Courtois own goal - by a single goal away to Espanyol in their round nine clash. Midweek, however, they earned me some money back by easily beating Austria Vienna 3-0 in the UEFA Champions League.

Real Betis (9/1) scored an offside goal through Molina (9/1 to score first, 10/3 anytime) and even faced ten men for nearly half of the game, but still lost 2-1 at home to Elche. It was their second defeat in a row.

In conclusion, both teams played in European competition midweek so that shouldn't make a difference to the expectancy of an Atletico Madrid win, but the 90 minute price is too short for a single, forcing me to look elsewhere for our bet.

The double result of Atletico/Atletico is 8/11, minus 1 goal is 7/10 and to score in both halves is a tempting 4/5, but as Los Colchoneros have won three out of their last four home games with both teams scoring, coupled with Betis losing 3/4 away the same, I opt for a chancier punt.

Worth a punt: Match Result and Both Teams to Score - Atletico (19/10)

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