Almeria vs Girona

Estadio de los Juegos Mediterráneos forms the backdrop for a lopsided La Liga encounter between dead-last Almeria and joint-toppers Girona.

Almeria’s astonishingly disastrous La Liga campaign hit a new low at the start of 2024 as a 1-0 loss at Osasuna condemned them to a 19th winless outing in 2023/24 (D5, L14). Nailed to the bottom of the standings as the only side in Europe’s top-five leagues yet to get into the win column this term, ‘Los Rojiblancos’ risk joining Sporting Gijon of 1997/98 as the only side in the competition’s history to go winless in the opening 20 rounds. But even if they can avoid that feat, the fact remains the only two teams to have gone winless by this stage of a top-flight campaign in Spain went on to suffer relegation from the bottom place. Back-to-back goalless draws on home turf at least give Almeria hope they could avoid another defeat here.

Unfortunately for the troubled home side, visiting Girona are not in a forgiving mood as their dream La Liga campaign continued with an incredible 4-3 home win against Atletico Madrid at the turn of the new calendar year. Joint-league leaders squeaked past Elche 2-0 in last week’s Copa del Rey action, extending their unbeaten streak across all competitions to 14 matches (W12, D2). Their last nine victories during that run all saw them score 2+ goals, suggesting Almeria’s porous backline could be in a world of trouble. Leaving Catalonia won’t faze Michael Sanchez’s side, considering they’re the only La Liga team alongside Barcelona yet to lose an away league match this season (W7, D2). But they’ve worryingly managed just one clean sheet in those fixtures.

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