MX23RW : Sunday, February 28 18:19:36| >> :120:16597:16597:
Jan 23, 2021 at 8pm UK at Mendizorroza, Vitoria, Basque Country
Real MadridReal Madrid
Joselu (59')
Navarro (10'), Garcia (49'), Laguardia (79'), Sainz (85'), Mendez (90+2')
FT(HT: 0-3)
Casemiro (15'), Benzema (41', 70'), Hazard (45+1')
Militao (59'), Mendy (86'), Benzema (88')

Preview: Alaves vs. Real Madrid - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's La Liga clash between Alaves and Real Madrid, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Real Madrid will be looking to bounce back from two disappointing defeats when they continue their 2020-21 La Liga campaign away to struggling Alaves on Saturday night.

Los Blancos were dumped out of the Copa del Rey by third-tier side Alcoyano on Wednesday, but they are currently on an eight-game unbeaten run in La Liga, which has moved them into second spot in the table.

Match preview

Real Madrid's Mariano Diaz in action against Alaves in La Liga on November 28, 2020© Reuters

Alaves are in their fifth straight season at this level of football, but it does appear that it will be a struggle for the Basque outfit to retain their status as a top-flight club for the 2021-22 campaign.

Pablo Machin was sacked as head coach earlier this month following a poor run of form, with Abelardo Fernandez now in charge of the club, but the 50-year-old has been unable to oversee a change of fortunes thus far, losing his two games at the helm against Almeria and Sevilla.

Alaves were actually thumped 5-0 by second-tier outfit Almeria in the Copa del Rey on January 16, but there was certainly an improvement in their 2-1 home defeat to Sevilla in the league on Tuesday night.

El Glorioso have won four, drawn six and lost nine of their 19 league matches this season to sit 17th, just one point clear of 18th-placed Elche, who have two games in hand over the side directly above them.

Osasuna goalkeeper Sergio Herrera in action against Real Madrid on January 9, 2021© Reuters

Madrid, meanwhile, are currently on an eight-game unbeaten run in La Liga, which has seen them rise into second spot in the table, four points behind leaders Atletico Madrid, who have two matches in hand.

Zinedine Zidane's side were held to a goalless draw by Osasuna in their last league game on January 9, though, before suffering two damaging defeats in quick succession.

Indeed, Los Blancos lost 2-1 to Athletic Bilbao in the semi-finals of the Spanish Super Cup on January 14 before incredibly going down 2-1 to third-tier side Alcoyano in the Copa del Rey on Wednesday.

Zidane selected a relatively strong XI for the cup match, but a team including the likes of Marcelo, Isco, Lucas Vazquez, Vinicius Junior and Federico Valverde came up short on the night.

Madrid, who will be led by David Bettoni this weekend following Zidane's positive coronavirus test, will fancy their chances of returning to winning ways in the league, although they suffered a 2-1 defeat to Alaves when the two teams locked horns in the reverse match back in November.

Alaves La Liga form: LWDLLL
Alaves form (all competitions): DLWLLL

Real Madrid La Liga form: WWWDWD
Real Madrid form (all competitions): WDWDLL

Team News

Sergio Ramos in action for Real Madrid on December 12, 2020© Reuters

Alaves should be able to call upon Lucas Perez this weekend following a slight ankle problem so Edgar Mendez could switch to a wide position for the home side.

Rodrigo Ely is still injured, but the Basque club are otherwise in good shape in terms of availability, meaning that new head coach Abelardo has a number of decisions to make.

There are not expected to be many changes from the side that started against Sevilla, though, with Tomas Pina, Rodrigo Battaglia and Luis Rioja all likely to be in the XI.

Madrid will again be without the services of Rodrygo Goes through injury, while Nacho will not be involved, having recently come into close contact with an individual who tested positive for coronavirus.

Dani Carvajal and Sergio Ramos both missed out against Alcoyano due to knocks, and the pair have again been left out of the squad for this game, meaning that Eder Militao and Vazquez could both start at the back.

There will be wholesale changes from the clash with Alcoyano, with Thibaut Courtois, Raphael Varane, Luka Modric, Eden Hazard and Karim Benzema among those expected to return, but Valverde will not be available due to a muscular problem.

Alaves possible starting lineup:
Pacheco; Navarro, Laguardia, Lejeune, Duarte; Mendez, Battaglia, Pina, Rioja; Joselu, Perez

Real Madrid possible starting lineup:
Courtois; Vazquez, Varane, Militao, Mendy; Modric, Casemiro, Kroos; Asensio, Benzema, Hazard

SM words green background

We say: Alaves 1-2 Real Madrid

The pressure is certainly on Madrid heading into this weekend's clash following back-to-back defeats. Alaves are capable of making it difficult for the champions despite their disappointing form, but we expect the visitors to claim all three points courtesy of a narrow success.

Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting 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.Away Win:data


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