Saturday, March 24, 2018

Prediction: Valencia vs Real Sociedad

Verdict: Both teams to score – yes

Best Odds: 12/25

Bookmaker: 888sport

Valencia are very much alive on the race for a UEFA Champions League berth, and a win at home would go a long way to keep them in that position. They will host a struggling Real Sociedad side, one that has not been able to perform according to their pre-season expectations.


Valencia are not the surprising team they were earlier in the season, but they have still managed to keep themselves afloat in the upper part of the standings and, if the season ended today, they would qualify for the UEFA Champions League. That alone should be a huge success for a team that took on a secondary role in LaLiga over the past few years, but the team is capable of finishing in the Top 3 if they can re-discover their early season form. They are riding a two-game winning streak following their 2-1 away win against Malaga the last time, but they had lost three straight prior to this run so they are just making ground over what they lost in the past few weeks. They need to show they left their struggles behind, and this game against a poor away side such as Real Sociedad seems like the best chance to do so.

Team News

Manchester United loanee Andreas Pereira has been ruled out with a thigh injury.

Meanwhile, three other players are doubtful and would be game-time decisions. These are Ezequiel Garay (leg), Javier Jimenez (knee) and Geoffrey Kondogbia (foot).

Real Sociedad

It is not an understatement to say that Real Sociedad have underperformed massively this season. The team was expected to battle for a UEFA Europa League berth, but instead they have been stumbling and battling with inconsistencies all year long. Their bad results have forced them to settle with a spot in the lower half of the standings, as they were in 12th place with 29 points ahead of this round of matches. They might be coming off a 3-0 win against Levante at home the last time, but the week before that they were thrashed 5-2 by Real Madrid and also got eliminated from the Europa League against RB Salzburg, a team that is supposedly inferior on paper. Perhaps they can start a winning streak here against Valencia, but their recent record on the road is not very good: D1 L4 in their last five matches away from Anoeta.

Team News

The Basque side won’t have one of their best players, as Willian Jose remains out due to a foot problem.

Geronimo Rulli (thigh), Xabi Prieto (groin) and Carlos Martinez (shoulder) are doubtful as well. This means that Real Sociedad could be quite depleted ahead of this game.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Real Sociedad are currently riding a six-game winless streak on the road (D1, L5) across all competitions.
  • Four of Valencia’s last five games have seen over 2.5 goals scored. In those four contests, both teams have scored at least once.
  • Valencia won the reverse fixture 3-2 at Anoeta. However, Sociedad had won the previous four matches against Los Che.
  • Valencia have a W3 L3 record in his last six Liga matches. Sociedad have a W2 L4 over that same span, so neither side is riding an impressive form at the moment.
  • Four of the last five meetings between both sides have had over 1,5 goals scored.


Valencia have been pretty good at home this season, and Real Sociedad have struggled badly on the road. However, both teams need the three points to get closer to their objectives.

As such, I believe this will be a rather open game where both teams could end up scoring.

Verdict: Both teams to score – yes

Best Odds: 12/25

Bookmaker: 888sport


Juan Pablo Aravena

A freelance writer and sports analyst with almost five years of experience in the industry before joining SoccerNews, Juan Pablo Aravena is based in Chile and currently contributes to several publications and websites including SoccerNews, 12up, and Sports From The Basement, while also working as a fantasy beat writer for RotoWire, as a database editor for EA Sports, and as a football analyst for SmartOdds and InsideFutbol. His areas of focus are Serie A, Bundesliga, Premier League, LaLiga, and Ligue 1, but he has also written about MLS and South American football in the past.



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