MX23RW : Thursday, October 28 18:20:43| >> :600:93010:93010:
Aug 29, 2021 at 6.30pm UK at Estadio Teresa Rivero
Rayo VallecanoRayo Vallecano
4-0
GranadaGranada
Garcia (3'), Trejo (23' pen.), Nteka (43'), Comesana (58')
Ciss (38')
FT(HT: 3-0)

Suarez Charris (27'), Puertas (33'), Milla (33'), Quini (90+2')

Preview: Rayo Vallecano vs. Granada - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Sunday's La Liga clash between Rayo Vallecano and Granada, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Following their promotion last season, Rayo Vallecano will continue their search for a first La Liga point of the campaign on Sunday, when they welcome Granada to the Estadio de Vallecas.

Having started with consecutive defeats, the hosts have immediately sunk to the foot of the La Liga table, although that could quickly change, while their visitors arrive on the back of two draws from their opening matches.


Match preview

Granada players celebrate overcoming Napoli in the Europa League on February 25, 2021© Reuters

Rayo Vallecano earned promotion back to the top tier last season, as they managed to keep hold of a playoff spot, and dumped Leganes out with a 5-1 aggregate victory in the semi-final.

Los Franjirrojos then overturned a first-leg deficit to defeat Girona 3-2 on aggregate in the final, and they now return to the Spanish top flight with the aim of avoiding an immediate drop.

Their campaign has not got off to the best start, as they were thrashed 3-0 away against Sevilla on the opening day, with Youssef En-Nesyri converting an early penalty before Erik Lamela sealed the result with a second-half brace.

Andoni Iraola's men then suffered a second straight defeat last time out, as Mikel Oyarzabal scored from the penalty spot in a 1-0 victory for Real Sociedad.

While their tough opening schedule makes two defeats somewhat excusable, Los Franjirrojos will be keen to quickly get off the mark, as they look to avoid being stuck at the foot of the division, with only three other sides yet to collect a point.

They take on a Granada side who have also had a relatively slow start to the campaign, having collected two points from their two games.

Granada manager Diego Martinez pictured on January 9, 2021© Reuters

Granada impressed for the majority of last season, finding themselves in a battle for spots in the top seven, but a poor run of form in the final stretch saw them fall to a ninth-placed finish.

After finishing seventh in the previous campaign, that may have come as a slight disappointment to the Nazaries, who will look to bounce back in impressive fashion and secure a European spot this time around.

They travelled to take on Europa League champions Villarreal on the opening day, and earned a commendable point as they held the Yellow Submarine to a goalless draw.

Robert Moreno's side then hosted Valencia, and they led for the majority thanks to Luis Suarez's opener until they were pegged back in the 88th minute, as Carlos Soler converted a penalty to snatch a point for the visitors.

The Nazaries will now look to put their first win on the board to head into the international break with a commendable tally of five points from the opening three games.

Rayo Vallecano La Liga form:
  • L
  • L

Granada La Liga form:
  • D
  • D



Team News

Granada's Kenedy celebrates scoring their second goal with Jorge Molina on February 18, 2021© Reuters

Rayo Vallecano come in with a clean bill of health, as Jose Angel Pozo recently returned following a setback in the summer.

Randy Nteka and Andres Martin have each started one game this season, and Iraola will have the tough decision of who will lead the line on Sunday.

After a commendable performance against Real Sociedad, they are unlikely to make any major changes, with new winger Martin Merquelanz set to keep his place after arriving on loan.

Granada boast an experienced spine, with German Sanchez playing at the heart of a back four and talented French midfielder Maxime Gonalons shielding the defence.

The line should be led by Carlos Bacca, who has enjoyed successful spells at Club Brugge, Sevilla, AC Milan and Villarreal over the course of his career, while also surpassing 50 international caps for Colombia.

He will be supported by his compatriot Luis Suarez, who is a key man for Moreno's side on the left of a front three, having opened his account for the season against Valencia.

Rayo Vallecano possible starting lineup:
Dimitrievski; Balliu, Saveljich, Catena, F Garcia; Valentin, Comesana; Merquelanz, Trejo, A Garcia; Nteka

Granada possible starting lineup:
Escandell; Foulquier, Duarte, Sanchez, Neva; Milla, Gonalons, Monchu; Suarez, Bacca, Machis


SM words green background

We say: Rayo Vallecano 0-1 Granada

While Rayo Vallecano made major improvements for the second league game, limiting a strong Real Sociedad outfit to very few chances, we do not see them springing a surprise on Sunday.

Granada boast the stronger of the two squads, and the hosts have failed to threaten going forward so far, meaning one goal for Moreno's side could make the difference if they can break through a resilient back line.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or an away win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home/Away:data


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How you voted: Rayo Vallecano vs Granada

Rayo Vallecano
38.6%
Draw
12.3%
Granada
49.1%
57
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Todays Game Header Right
Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Real Madrid1063124111321
2Sevilla106311771021
3Real Betis116321912721
4Real Sociedad10631149521
5Rayo Vallecano116141812619
6Osasuna115421413119
7Atletico MadridAtletico9531138518
8Athletic Bilbao10451106417
9Barcelona104331511415
10Espanyol113531111014
11Valencia113441617-113
12Mallorca113441016-613
13Villarreal102621310312
14Celta Vigo103161012-210
15ElcheElche11245813-510
16AlavesAlaves10307513-89
17CadizCadiz111551018-88
18Granada9144713-67
19Levante10055918-95
20Getafe10028316-132

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