Sports Mole previews Saturday’s La Liga clash between Real Betis and Rayo Vallecano, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
The visitors suffered a 7-0 defeat to Atletico on home soil in their last match on Monday, while Real Betis will enter this match off the back of a 4-2 defeat to Athletic Bilbao.
Real Betis made the perfect start to their La Liga season, recording a 2-1 victory over Villarreal, before picking up a welcome point in a goalless draw with Atletico in their second match of the campaign.
Manuel Pellegrini‘s side were unable to build on the solid opening, though, as they were beaten 4-2 by Athletic last time out; the Green and Whites actually led 2-0 at San Mames inside 10 minutes, with Willian Jose and Isco on the scoresheet.
However, Athletic went on to score four times without reply to secure the three points, and Real Betis currently sit down in ninth position in the tableboasting four points from their first three matches.
El Glorioso finished sixth in Spain’s top flight last season, so they will play in the group stage of the Europa League this season, and the team will again be expecting to challenge high up the La Liga table this term.
Real Betis have been very active during the summer market, with a number of players arriving to boost the squad, while there have also been notable departures in the shape of Sergio Canales and Joaquin.
Rayo, meanwhile, made an impressive start to their league season, recording back-to-back away victories over Almeria and Granada in their first two games, keeping clean sheets in both.
captain lightning Oscar Trejo said after the match that the players ‘had no words’ to explain what had happened, and the capital outfit will be determined to move on from the freak result this weekend.
Los Franjirrojos have finished 12th and 11th in Spain’s top flight since their promotion from the Segunda Division at the end of the 2020-21 campaign and will be aiming for a similar position this term.
Rayo’s recent record against Real Betis will not fill their fans with too much confidence, though, as they have not beaten the Seville outfit in La Liga since April 2014 and suffered defeats in both matches last season.
Real Betis La Liga form:
Rayo Vallecano La Liga form:
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Head coach Pellegrini would certainly have been pleased with aspects of his team’s performance against Athletic last time out, so there are not expected to be many changes for this match.
Rodri is likely to be introduced in a wide position, though, and there could also be a start at left-back for Juan Miranda; Willian Jose’s goal last time out, meanwhile, should see the striker retain his spot in the XI.
There could also be a change in the middle of the park, with Pathe Ciss pushing to be involved from the first whistle, but head coach Francisco is expected to resist the temptation to completely shuffle his pack.
Real Betis possible starting lineup:
Silva; Sabaly, Pezzella, Felipe, Miranda; Rodriguez, Rock; Rodri, Isco, Perez; Willian Joseph
Rayo Vallecano possible starting lineup:
Dimitrievsky; Balliu, Aridane, Lejeune, Espino; Ciss, Valentine; Palazon, Trejo, De Frutos; nteka
We say: Real Betis 2-1 Rayo Vallecano
Rayo will be desperate to bounce back from their seven-goal defeat last time out, but this is a very tricky match against a talented Real Betis outfit. Pellegrini’s side will also be aiming to recover from a loss, and we are backing the home side to secure all three points on Saturday evening.
For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.