Sunday's La Liga previews
Atletico Madrid v Sporting Gijon - 19:00 Sky Sports 1 (second half only)
Atletico (1/2) won comfortably at Valladolid and key to that was Diego Forlan (7/2 to score first or 10/11 anytime), who faced with criticism, took his goal very well and is clearly motivated to prove the internal doubters and press wrong to chastise his contributions to the team.
Sporting (5/1) had been floundering recently but beat in form Getafe at home last weekend. Getafe hit the post and despite impressive counter attacking from Sporting, can count there selves unlucky not to have got a draw.
With one win, three draws and four defeats away from home, Sporting do not fare so well on their travels. I therefore fancy another Atletico win, simple as that!
If you share my view, unless you expect it to be level at half time, don't forget that Sky are only showing the second half live.
Valencia v Villarreal - 20:00 Sky Sports 1
If this fixture was a week ago, I would have predicted a Villarreal win as they had been in great form, have often won this fixture and the David Silva less Valencia (5/6) have proven to be far better in away games than at the Mestalla.
Apart from my final reason, everything else has changed for Villarreal (3/1) played poorly at home to Almeria last weekend (Marcano in particular was a liability defensively) and at times looked under motivated and disinterested in their shocking midweek Copa Del Rey defeat to Celta Vigo's youth team in front of their own spectators.
David Silva (2/1 to score at anytime) is back for Los Che and there is no doubt that Valencia's stylish counter attack game suffers when he is absent. It's worth adding that Valencia's style of play should be aided by the yellow submarines high defensive line and general attack minded play.
David Villa will no doubt benefit from Silva's return, but I'm going to stick to my own rules and refuse to back him until he scores. If now is the time for you, Villa is 10/11 to score at anytime or 7/2 to score first.
Valencia did throw away a two goal lead in La Coruna midweek and a draw (12/5) cannot be ruled out, but I fancy Valencia to edge this one in a high scoring match.
This should be an entertaining game, so enjoy and don't forget that should the landscape change, you can always bet In-Play with William Hill Online.
Almeria v Tenerife - 16:00
Almeria (10/11) have scored seventeen goals in seventeen games and Tenerife (11/4) have lost seven and drawn one away from home, so 1-0 to Almeria (9/2) could prove to be just the ticket. Whatever the score, I'd certainly expect a home win.
Malaga v Getafe - 16:00
This will be the third time that these two have played each other in a week and a half due to the Copa Del Rey. Malaga (7/5) won the first leg 2-1 and Getafe (7/4) won the second 5-1 at the Alfonso Perez (what a great player he was) stadium.
More interested in league survival, Malaga put little effort into the second leg and you would therefore have to assume that the stored energy will be released in this weekend's rubber match. Getafe are a far better team no doubt, but the two have different priorities and although Malaga are adept at drawing, I think they will win this one. Certainly not a pick I'd use on an accumulator though!
Mallorca v Deportivo - 16:00
Confidence will be high in the Deportivo (12/5) camp after their midweek comeback and elimination of Valencia in the Copa Del Rey and Mallorca's (21/20) 100% record has to go at some point. Not one I'm betting on and I could easily be wrong, but I fancy Depor to get a draw (11/5).
Racing v Valladolid - 16:00
As last weekend's defeat to Atletico showed, Valladolid (13/5) are in poor form and have few ideas going forward. Fresh from eliminating Real Madrid conquerors Alcorcon, Racing (19/20) are in decent form and boast the services of starlet Sergio Canales. A home win for me.
Real Zaragoza v Xerez - 16:00
New signing Humberto Suazo could make his debut for goal shy Zaragoza (8/13), but you'd have to fancy a home win against Xerez (17/4) regardless of this.