Savage gives us his thoughts on the pick of the matches in Spain’s Primera División as Barcelona look to cement their place at the top
Sevilla v Athletic Club
Sat 08 Oct 17:30
This Sevilla side’s fall from grace has been quite spectacular. From cruising to a Champions League spot last season to sacking their manager after just 10 games this season is quite the turnaround. Their abject performances on both the domestic and European fronts placed Lopetegui in an untenable position. The loss to Atlético in round seven was bad enough but another chastening defeat in midweek compounded his woes. And so up steps Jorge Sampaoli for a second stint at the helm. He will not look forward to welcoming a Bilbao side who are riding high at the opposite end of the table. After scoring just once in their opening 2 fixtures Los Leones have netted 15 in their last 5. However, meetings between these two sides are not normally inundated with goals but the visitors should have the edge.
Getafe v Real Madrid
Sat 08 Oct 20:00
Everything appeared to be pointing to yet another Real win against Osasuna when Benzema stepped up to ball 12 yards out. However, the Frenchman fluffed his lines for the third time in two matches against the side from Pamplona. The draw pushed Los Blancos into second on goal difference and they will be hoping it does not remain that way for much longer. Unfortunately for Ancelotti’s side their next opponents are one of just 3 teams who beat them on the road last year. The home side have managed to find some added goals in recent weeks scoring twice in each of their last 3 (W2 L1). However, none of those sides were in the kind of form that their visitors are in. Getafe have been able to stifle Madrid in recent meetings and they may well do the same. That does not mean they will end up on the winning side.
Barcelona v Celta Vigo
Sun 09 Oct 20:00
Barcelona’s domestic form (W6 D1) lies in stark contrast with their European form (W1 L2) which leaves them struggling in their group. However, an unexpected rise to the top of the league standings after Madrid failed to take all 3 points should have Xavi’s men hungry to return to action on Sunday. Their visitors have conceded 11 goals in their three games against top half of the table sides (L3) and scored just twice. Los Celestes will be painfully aware of the attacking firepower that lays in wait for them at the Camp Nou where the home side have already notched 7 in three home fixtures. The two meetings between these sides produced 10 goals last season and there is the possibility of more than a few this time around.
Sevilla v Athletic Club: Athletic Club to Win @ 7/5
Getafe v Real Madrid: Madrid to Win and U2.5 @ 3/1
Barcelona v Celta Vigo: Barcelona and U3.5 @ 6/5
The above in a treble at a little over 20/1