Preview - Real Madrid vs Villarreal 13 Jan

Started by Bensergi, Jan 13, 2018, 09:13 PM

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Bensergi

Real Madrid vs Villarreal

Zinedine Zidane's job security dominated the lead-up to this match. The bald Frenchman will face more heat should Real Madrid falter further in the weeks to come.

Already, they sit in fourth spot and are a massive 16 points behind Barcelona, while Villarreal, sitting in sixth, are just four points back of Real.

Real have won five of their last six La Liga home games, but the odd one out was the 3-0 El Clasico Christmas edition defeat to Barcelona. It's been nearly nine years since Real lost back-to-back home games.

Cristiano Ronaldo has grabbed 12 goals in 13 outings against Villarreal in La Liga, and will be eager to let that run continue.
Karim Benzema has resumed training following injury but will not be rushed back into action.

Villarreal coach Javi Calleja, who coached his team to two consecutive 1-0 away wins, will be without suspended defender Victor Ruiz for the trip to Madrid, while the likes of Bruno, Roberto Soriano and Andres Fernandez remain sidelined through injury.

Prediction: Real Madrid 3-1 Villarreal

Bensergi

Match Stats:

  • Real Madrid 0-1 Villarreal
  • Shots: 20-9
  • Possession: 56%-44%
  • Corner kicks: 11-0


Pablo Fornals scored a superb late goal for Villarreal as they won at the Bernabeu for the first time to load more pressure on Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane.

Real edged the first half and Gareth Bale had a header ruled out for offside, before Cristiano Ronaldo's free-kick was tipped on to the bar.

However, the visitors improved in the second period and deservedly went ahead after breaking at pace from a Real corner.

Denis Cheryshev found Enes Unal, whose shot was saved by Keylor Navas - but Fornals then chipped the stranded keeper from 20 yards.

Fourth-placed Real Madrid, who won last season's La Liga title and the Champions League, remain 16 points behind leaders Barcelona - and that gap could increase when Barca visit Real Sociedad on Sunday (19:45 GMT).

Zidane's side's Champions League spot for next season is looking perilous - they now sit only one point above Villarreal, who move up to fifth.

Ronaldo, who has only scored four La Liga goals this season, missed several chances to score but had a strong penalty appeal turned down in the first half when he was clipped just before shooting at keeper Sergio Asenjo, who put in an excellent performance.

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