Real Madrid’s hope to clinch La Liga title is still open. They are now the frontrunner in the title race alongside Atletico Madrid. This weekend, Los Blancos would be their last tough opponent for Karim Benzema and Co, Athletic Bilbao. They have been in-form and quite solid this season though only sits on the ninth in the standings due to their inconsistency. They are ready to stumble the reigning Champions for their own pride.
Both teams’ previous games
Bilbao was surprisingly beaten 0-1 by Huesca, the struggling side in the relegation battle in the midweek. The only goal of the game was scored by the former Barcelona and Everton man, Sandro Ramirez.
Meanwhile, Real Madrid snatched an easy 4-1 win over Granada on the road in the midweek. Luka Modric bagged an opener followed by Rodrygo, Alvaro Odriozola and Karim Benzema at the second half, with one concession in between as Jorge Molina found the back of the net through deflected ball which bouncing back in front of him.
Marcelino is known for his 4-4-2 formation and is expected to continue employing it here. Unfortunately, he will not be able to play Iker Muniain, Yuri Berchiche, Inigo Lekue and Andrea Capa plus Inigo Vicente in the starting XI. Thus, Inaki Williams and Asier Villalibre will be featuring as the front duo while Jon Morcillo will be deputised for il Capitano, Muniain on the left flank.
Zinedine Zidane might still be relying on 4-3-3 formation although the crisis in their defence line is quite worrying since Sergio Ramos, Raphael Varane, Dani Carvajal, Lucas Vasquez and Ferland Mendy. On the backline, Eder Militao and Nacho will be the main option with Alvaro Odriozola and Miguel Guiterrez as the wing back, whereas on the attack, Benzema is still the leader upfront accompanied by Eden Hazard and Marco Asencio or Vinicius Junior.
Players to watch
Inaki Williams is one of their key figures on the front contributing six goals and assists each. Some other dangerous men in the squad who is worth considering are the former Torino man, Alex Belenguer, the current top scorer of the club with eight goals and four assists, and the young Jon Morcillo who has netted and provided assists twice each.
The Frenchman Karim Benzema is still entailing Messi on the top scorer list with 22 goals and eight assist. Another top performers in Madrid this season is their top assist provider, Toni Kroos with 10 assists so far plus three goals.
Athletic Bilbao vs Real Madrid Prediction
Marcelino’s men have convincing record against the high profile team with a stalemate against Villareal, and two late winners while taking on Sevilla and the league leader, Atletico Madrid recently. This is something Luka Modric and Co shall be careful with. This mouthwatering match is going to be tight considering both forms lately, the home side could still hold Zidane’s men in a draw.
The punters shockingly puts their higher bet on the home side as the slight favorite. Bilbao’s odds to win are at 5/1, whereas Los Merengues’s win market is at 11/18. The odds for the draw result are at 7/2.