Ace Football previews the LaLiga match between Real Madrid and Elche, and offers the latest stats, tips, and team news.
Three points are a must as Real Madrid welcome the relegation-threatened Elche to the Alfredo Di Stefano on Saturday afternoon.
Ahead of the final 12 games of the 2020/21 campaign, the hosts sit in third-place and eight points behind leaders Atletico Madrid. Anything less than victory, therefore, would be seriously harmful to their title hopes. Elche, meanwhile, lie 30 points behind their opponents in a distant 17th.
The visitors are high on confidence right now and can take heart from Real Madrid’s various slip-ups at home this season. But the return of key players, along with a strong run of form, leaves the momentum with the home side.
Real Madrid Form & Stats
An entire year has passed since Real Madrid last played at the Bernabeu, having used the Alfredo Di Stefano base ever since. They’ve done well at the venue in big games, but not always so good against smaller clubs. Cadiz and Alaves, for example, snatched surprise victories earlier in the season.
These various slip-ups are one of the major reasons Zinedine Zidane’s men are trailing by eight points in the LaLiga title race. It’s left them under pressure to deliver on Saturday, knowing any more lost points could finish their title defense.
Los Blancos have been convincing at home lately though, having won six of their last eight league games (D1 L1). Five of the six triumphs, in fact, ended with a 2-0 scoreline. And with Karim Benzema back, as well as Sergio Ramos and Eden Hazard, the record 34-time Spanish champions should be in an upbeat mood.
Key Team Stats
- Won 17 of their 21 league games at the Alfredo Di Stefano (D1 L3).
- 5 of their last 6 home league wins ended 2-0.
- Unbeaten in each of their last 21 league games against Elche (W18 D3).
- Karim Benzema has scored 5 goals in his last 6 home league games.
- Marco Asensio has started his last 11 league games but has only scored 2 goals.
- Haven’t lost 2 home league games against newly-promoted clubs since 2006/07.
Elche Form & Stats
Raul Guti and Guido Carrillo’s goals sealed an impressive 2-1 home win over Sevilla last time out. It was the club’s fifth victory of the season (D9 L11) and moved them out of the relegation zone into 17th-place.
Fran Escriba has done well since replacing Jorge Almiron as manager last month. The former Villarreal and Getafe boss has won two of his opening four games (L2) in charge. In Real Madrid, however, lies a huge test. And considering his side lost 3-0 to Barcelona at Camp Nou recently, a similar outcome could be on the cards.
A poor away record doesn’t help. Elche have lost each of their last four trips and only scored a single goal. Despite winning their first two games on the road this season, the Franjiverdes are currently winless in their last 10 away matches (D3 L7). They’ve also scored just 10 times, which is the league’s second-worst away goal record.
Key Team Stats
- Winless in their last 10 away league games (D3 L7).
- Haven’t lost 5 or more away games in a row since 1988/89.
- Conceded at least 2 goals in their last 3 away league games.
- Conceded 37 league goals, but an expected goals against count of 44.7 suggests Elche should have surrended another 7.7 goals.
- Over 2.5 goals in 5 of their last 6 league games.
- Fran Escriba is winless in his 9 games against Real Madrid (D1 L8).
- Unbeaten in the 3 games Guido Carrillo has scored in (W1 D2).
Out: Mariano Diaz, Dani Carvajal, Marcelo, Alvaro Odriozola.
Out: Emiliano Rigoni.
(Note: The image will change to the official XI once they’re both announced)
Top Goalscorers in LaLiga
Below are some head-to-head stats on each team’s recent form in LaLiga.