MX23RW : Thursday, April 15 04:31:51| >> :600:122709:122709:
Feb 14, 2021 at 8pm UK at Estadio El Madrigal
VillarrealVillarreal
1-2
Real BetisReal Betis
Moreno (65' pen.)
Parejo (43'), Foyth (55'), Pena (85')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Fekir (45'), Emerson (52')
Emerson (55'), Miranda (90+5')

Preview: Villarreal vs. Real Betis - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Sunday's La Liga clash between Villarreal and Real Betis, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

One of the most intriguing matches in the latest set of La Liga fixtures will take place at Estadio de la Ceramica on Sunday night as Villarreal host Real Betis.

Villarreal are currently fifth in the table, having picked up 36 points from their 22 matches this season, while Betis occupy seventh position and would move to within three points of the Yellow Submarine with a win.


Match preview

Villarreal manager Unai Emery pictured in December 2020© Reuters

Only leaders Atletico Madrid have lost fewer La Liga matches than Villarreal this season, with Unai Emery's side suffering just two defeats from 22 games; they have been the draw specialists, though, sharing the points on 12 occasions in the league, which has prevented them from seriously challenging for the top four.

The Yellow Submarine are currently in charge of fifth position in the table, but they are only one point clear of sixth-placed Real Sociedad, while the gap to fourth-placed Sevilla is six points, and the Europa League holders also have a game in hand over each of the four teams directly below them.

Villarreal have not actually won in the league since January 8, when they thumped Celta Vigo 4-0, drawing each of their last four against Granada, Huesca, Sociedad and Elche during a disappointing run of form.

Emery's side were also surprisingly knocked out of the Copa del Rey at the quarter-final stage by Levante earlier this month, but they still have a busy schedule as a two-legged last-32 Europa League tie with Austrian side Red Bull Salzburg will take place before the end of the month.

Villarreal have won three of their last five La Liga matches with Betis, including both games between the two sides last season, but the points were shared in a 1-1 draw when they locked horns in Seville in December.

Barcelona's Lionel Messi takes a free kick during the La Liga clash with Real Betis on February 7, 2021© Reuters

Betis, meanwhile, will enter this weekend's match off the back of a 3-2 defeat to Barcelona last time out; Manuel Pellegrini's side had levelled the score at 2-2 in the 75th minute of the contest, but Trincao struck a winner in the final exchanges as the Catalan outfit continued their impressive run in the league.

The Seville side also lost on penalties to Athletic Bilbao in the quarter-finals of the Copa del Rey on February 4, but they are in the argument for a potential top-six finish this season, which would be an excellent achievement.

The gap from seventh-placed Betis to sixth-placed Sociedad is five points, but Pellegrini's team would move to within three points of fifth-placed Villarreal if they manage to triumph on Sunday evening.

The fact that Los Verdiblancos have lost 10 of their 22 league matches this term is staggering considering their position in the table, but they have managed to record nine wins, which is the joint-best record outside of the top four.

Villarreal La Liga form: WWDDDD
Villarreal form (all competitions): DDWDLD

Real Betis La Liga form: DWWDWL
Real Betis form (all competitions): WDWWLL


Team News

Villarreal's Samuel Chukwueze pictured in November 2020© Reuters

Villarreal will again be without the services of Mario Gaspar, Vicente Iborra, Ruben Pena, Alberto Moreno and Samuel Chukwueze for this weekend's contest through injury, while Manu Trigueros is suspended due to the booking that he picked up against Elche.

Francis Coquelin is also a doubt, meaning that there might be a spot in midfield for Juan Foyth, while Trigueros's absence could see Moi Gomez drop into a deeper area.

Yeremi Pino is pushing to be involved in the final third alongside Gerard Moreno and Paco Alcacer, and the Spaniard could ultimately get the nod over Carlos Bacca if Gomez is moved into midfield.

As for Betis, Dani Martin, Marc Bartra, Victor Camarasa and Diego Lainez are still unavailable, but Pellegrini's team did not pick up any fresh issues against Barca.

There are expected to be changes to the side that lined up against the Catalan giants, with Guido Rodriguez, Sergio Canales and Joaquin all likely to earn starts.

Borja Iglesias was on the scoresheet against Ronald Koeman's team and should retain his spot in attack, though, meaning that Loren Moron could be named on the bench once again.

Villarreal possible starting lineup:
Asenjo; Costa, Albiol, Torres, Pedraza; Parejo, Foyth, Gomez; Moreno, Alcacer, Pino

Real Betis possible starting lineup:
Bravo; Emerson, Mandi, Ruiz, Miranda; Rodriguez, Canales; Joaquin, Fekir, Ruibal; Iglesias


SM words green background

We say: Villarreal 2-2 Real Betis

Villarreal have not actually won in the league since January 8, but Betis have been victorious in three of their last five in Spain's top flight. This is a difficult game to call as both teams have plenty to play for, and we have ultimately settled on a 2-2 draw at Estadio de la Ceramica.


Top betting 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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Barcelona's Lionel Messi takes a free kick during the La Liga clash with Real Betis on February 7, 2021
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Todays Game Header Right
Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Atletico MadridAtletico30207352203267
2Real Madrid30206453242966
3Barcelona30205569264365
4Sevilla30194744242061
5Real Sociedad301211747311647
6Real Betis30145114043-347
7Villarreal301113643331046
8Granada30116133650-1439
9Levante30911103739-238
10Celta Vigo30910114148-737
11Athletic Bilbao30910113933637
12CadizCadiz3098132745-1835
13Valencia30810123742-534
14Osasuna30810122536-1134
15Getafe3079142234-1230
16Huesca30512133145-1427
17Real Valladolid30512132741-1427
18ElcheElche30511142746-1926
19AlavesAlaves3059162447-2324
20EibarEibar30411152236-1423

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