MX23RW : Saturday, September 25 08:52:07| >> :600:91262:91262:
Jun 24, 2020 at 6.30pm UK at Estadio de Mendizorroza

Ely (61'), Mendez (90+6')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Lato (64')
Sanjurjo (38'), Lato (53'), Garcia (85')

Preview: Alaves vs. Osasuna - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews the second of the League Two playoff semi-final between Exeter City and Colchester United, including team news and predicted lineups.

Alaves and Osasuna square off at Mendizorrotza on Wednesday evening with the two clubs locked on the same points in the La Liga table.

Sitting in 12th and 13th place respectively, the teams sit nine points clear of the relegation zone with eight matches remaining.

Match preview

Osasuna manager Jagoba Arrasate in August 2019.© Reuters

Having recorded one win and two defeats since the resumption, Alaves will have mixed emotions regarding their return over the past three games.

Both of their setbacks, at Espanyol and Celta Vigo respectively, have come after red cards within the first half-hour of each contest, leaving them at a distinct disadvantage for the remainder of each game.

Nevertheless, Asier Garitano will acknowledge that it cannot be used as an excuse for their capitulation on Sunday as they suffered a 6-0 defeat to lowly Vigo.

Two of the half-a-dozen strikes came before Martin Aguirregabiria had been dismissed, with a further two coming within a minute of each other before the half-time whistle.

While the recent success over Real Sociedad will not be forgotten by Garitano, there will be concern that another defeat will leave his players struggling for confidence heading into the run-in.

Osasuna are at similar risk of losing belief having conceded seven goals in defeats to Atletico Madrid and Valencia without finding the back of the net.

Like their hosts, they have a recent positive result against Sociedad as an indicator to show that they are capable of quickly getting back on track.

That said, Jagoba Arrasate will not be feeling optimistic about his side's form ahead of three crucial fixtures in their battle to avoid relegation.

Meetings with Leganes and Eibar, teams sitting in 17th and 19th respectively, follow the clash with Alaves, and the schedule raises the stakes ahead of what, in theory, could turn out to be a pivotal showdown in the North of Spain.

Alaves La Liga form: WDDLWL

Osasuna La Liga form: LLWDLL

Team News

Alaves forward Lucas Perez pictured in December 2019© Reuters

Alaves will be without Aguirregabiria as he begins his suspension, but they are able to welcome back Tomas Pina after a one-match ban.

Fernando Pacheco, who was left out in favour of Roberto at the weekend, is expected to return between the sticks.

Scotland international Oliver Burke is pushing for a starting role, potentially in place of Joselu or Lucas Perez.

While being likely to retain a defensive shape, Osasuna boss Arrasate is expected to ring the changes for this contest.

Fran Merida and Ruben Garcia are both pushing for recalls in midfield and attack respectively.

Alaves possible starting lineup:
Pacheco; Navarro; Laguardia, Magallan, Lopez; Sainz, Fejsa, Pons, Mendez; Perez, Joselu

Osasuna possible starting lineup:
Martinez; Vidal, U.Garcia, Navas, D.Garcia, Estupinan; Brasanac, Sanjurjo, Merida; Cardona, R.Garcia

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We say: Alaves 1-1 Osasuna

Aware that defeat will only hinder their efforts to avoid a relegation battle, both teams will be more than content with a share of the spoils on Wednesday night. With this in mind, expect a game lacking in entertainment and goalmouth action, which will likely lead to a low-scoring draw.

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Marco Asensio celebrates scoring for Real Madrid on June 18, 2020
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