Athletic Club v Real Madrid – Betting Preview
Athletic Club Summary
Athletic Club has dropped off their league form in recent weeks and come into this nursing wounds after being comprehensively beaten by Basque rival Real Sociedad 3-1 last weekend. It was a result which hurt their pride and took them out of the running for a Champions League placing.
Top four has become a distant aim for Athletic Bilbao now. They start the weekend outside of the European places and now top seven is the only target.
Motivation for facing a much-hated Madrid visitor is never a problem, the whole city and fan base will make this an extremely hostile atmosphere, both favouring the host club.
Ernesto Valverde has some issues at the centre-back spot. Yeray is suspended and his normal defensive partner Íñigo Martínez is almost certainly out due to injury. The host will test Martinez but if he cannot pass fit then it’s a much weaker defence against one of the best attacks around.
Real Madrid Summary
After losing 2-1 to Villarreal in the league and then 3-1 in the Super Cup final to Barcelona last weekend, Carlo Ancelotti admitted that his team was struggling before the much-needed comeback in the cup on Thursday evening.
Missing numerous men injured plus Modric being rested, it looked like the situation was getting worse when they trailed Villarreal 2-0 at halftime. However, with a come-from-behind 3-2 victory in epic fashion, the mood and confidence are much improved after the backlash they faced from their own fans after the Supercup showing against Barcelona.
Ancelotti is still missing some important faces including David Alaba, Dani Carvajal, Aurélien Tchouaméni, and Lucas Vásquez.
On a positive note, the key playmaker Luka Modric is back totally fresh having rested since the trip to the middle east last weekend.
Looking at the 1×2 market first which is reasonably tight. The favourite for this game is Real Madrid @ 2.45. This is never an easy contest but they do have more quality and the much-needed physical power to get the points in this hostile and aggressive ground. Athletic to win is @ 2.90 while the draw is @ 3.40.
Moving onto the Asian handicap section for this contest. The market is very tight here and has settled for now with the draw (DNB) being offered as no bet. This means any bet on Athletic Club -0 @ 2.11 or Madrid -0 @ 1.78 would be returned should the match result in a draw.
Looking at The Under/Over market last of all which looks well set at 2.5. Over is priced @ 1.86 while the Under is @ 1.97. These are always hot-tempered matches and played at a frenetic speed. A red card is always possible too given the hatred the Basques have for Madrid. The best recommendation would be swerving goals as the chances of red cards are extra high here.