13 May 2019
After a disappointing 4-2 Europa League loss to Arsenal, Valencia host Deportivo Alaves to the Estadio de Mestalla for what can be a decisive La Liga clash in their pursuit of a top-four finish.
Even though the hosts pulled off a stunning 6-2 away win over Huesca last time out, they’ve suffered back-to-back LL losses before that fixture that have seen them lose by a narrow one-goal margin. Furthermore, although the Bats have sustained just two LL home defeats for the entire league campaign, they’ve played out ten draws in 18 LL home outings (W6, D10, L2) – more than any other team in the Spanish top flight. Notably, though, the Oranges are the only team that has yet to concede over 1.5 match goals at home in spite of the fact Marcelino Garcia Toral’s players have kept seven clean sheets at home this term. An encouraging fact for the home side is that they’ve stepped up their offensive game in the recent period, scoring 2+ match goals in six of their last eight home meetings across all competitions.
The visitors, on the other hand, are enduring the most challenging period this campaign, having failed to wrap up three points in all of their previous eight LL fixtures (D3, L5). Notably, four of five of Alaves’ losses in that period have seen them struggle to find the back of the net while two of those draws ending with the same 1-1 scoreline. Babazorros’ drop-off in form has also seen them go from three straight LL away games without a defeat (W2, D1) to three consecutive league road matches without a win (D1, L2). Abelardo’s main problem ahead of this trip could be that his players have failed to keep a clean sheet on nine successive LL road trips, conceding over 1.5 match goals four times in the process.
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