Match Day 32
Malaga vs Real Madrid
Monday, April 16th, 2018
03:45 am (GMT+8 Timing)
Stadium: La Rosaleda Stadium
Last five matches form: L L W D L
Average goals per match: 0.61
Average goals against per match: 1.55
Top Scorer: Gonzalo Castro and Diego Rolan (4)
Last five matches form: W W W D L
Average goals per match: 2.48
Average goals against per match: 1.10
Top Scorer: Cristiano Ronaldo (23)
La Liga mismatches don't come much bigger than this as doomed Malaga welcome Real Madrid to La Rosaleda.
Malaga aren't officially relegated just yet, but even were they to win each of their seven remaining matches, they would still only have 38 points which may not be enough. Realistically they have known their fate for some time but should at least be able to relax and attempt to play their football. They may be even weaker than usual here though, with Luis Hernández suspended and doubts about both joint top scorers, Diego Rolan and Gonzalo Castro.
With a top four place all but certain - Real are 12 points clear of fifth placed Betis - and a giant Champions League semi-final against Bayern Munich on the horizon, it would be no surprise to see Zinedine Zidane rotate a little here and perhaps give some of his star names a break here..
In the end though whichever side Real put out should have way too much for this poor Malaga outfit.
Malaga did give Real a game at the Bernabeu earlier in the season though, eventually only losing out by the odd goal in five.
Much will depend upon exactly which side Real put out here, but we do see their being goals in what could be an entertaining encounter.
Prediction: Malaga 1 - 4 Real Madrid
Half time: 0 - 1
Full time: 1 - 2
Shots: 13 - 16
Shots on target: 3 - 6
Corner Kicks: 5 - 2
Possession: 38% - 62%
Malaga's Federico Ricca, Manuel Iturra, Ivan Rodriguez and Roberto Rosales were all shown the yellow card by referee Ricardo De Burgos. Real Madrid kept their noses clean throughout.
As anticipated Real Madrid went without a number of their big guns here. Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale were absent from the squad altogether, whilst Toni Kroos and Marcelo remained on the bench throughout. They still had too much for Malaga though.
Malaga were just about in this game in the first quarter, but Real's class slowly began to tell with Isco becoming increasingly influential.
It looked ominous for the home side when the gave away a free kick around 25 yards out and almost dead centre in the 29th minute. Isco making them pay when curling his effort over the wall and into the bottom left corner. 1-0 at the break.
Madrid were pretty sloppy at the back here at times and a better side than Malaga would certainly have made them pay. They put this one to bed in the 63rd minute though. Excellent work from Karim Benzema to free Isco in the left-hand side of the area. Isco's ball back across goal removing the keeper from the equation and allowing Casemiro to tap in.
There was a consolation for the home side though and it came in the 93rd minute. Federico Ricca's cross into the area finding Diego Rolan who fired into the top corner.
Real Madrid took advantage of Valencia's loss to Barcelona yesterday to move back up into third position, but still three points adrift of big rivals Atletico in second.
Malaga remain where they have been for some time now. Rock bottom, and 14 points adrift of safety with only six games remaining.