Rayo Vallecano 0-0 Athletic Bilbao – Betting Review
Looking at the 1×2 market first. As predicted in the betting preview, the draw was the way to go here for value @ 3.10.
Moving onto the Asian handicap market for this contest. So close was the betting between these two well-matched clubs, the Draw no bet (DNB) was on offer. All bets were pushed as it ended all square.
Looking at The Under/Over betting last of all. The market had set the line quite low at 2 goals. I expected the line to be higher but at the same time, noted that Rayo are not as attacking as the media in Spain likes to portray. At risk of contradicting again in this paragraph, it was not a dull game by any means.
The match ended in a goalless draw with neither team feeling any extreme emotion as a result. The contest took around a half hour to get going and threaten goals, and to be fair to both sides, it was a far more entertaining affair than the 0-0 suggests.
This was one of three La Liga matches this round which finished without a goal and this one was the most entertaining, with chances missed both ends and two keepers playing outstandingly well.
Rayo hit the inside of the post in the first period and in added time, Athletic raced away and smashed the underside of the cross bar.
The contest was very even and a score draw would have been more accurate than 0-0. Fair scores 2-2 and 1-1.
With the draw, Ernesto Valverde’s six-match winning run against Rayo came to an end. And it also did little to boost their grip on European hopes.
Considering that both were out-of-form coming into this clash, it was perhaps of no surprise to see such a lacklustre start.
Five defeats in seven league outings preceded this game for Athletic Bilbao, and their lack of cutting edge was apparent for a good 30 minutes, before Sancet missed a sitter from a close range header on a set piece.
Rayo had begun slightly more promisingly and with more ambition, but only created half chances.
Just before the break however, Alvaro García unleashed a rocket that crashed back off the post to the relief of visiting goalkeeper Agirrezabala.
Rayo struggled to hit the target from promising but not clear openings, but it was not for the want of trying.
Caught out on one venture forward, the host were so nearly picked off on the break. Alejandro Berenguer had the goal at his mercy but his power left footed strike found the side netting.
A draw looked increasingly like the fairest result as more minutes ticked by, though Rayo almost got the lead when Garcia’s effort deflected wickedly goalwards off Raúl de Tomás, but it prompted a great stop from Basque hero Agirrezabala.
Bilbao had to see out the last few minutes a man less after Sancet was dismissed for a needless and reckless foul.
The Basques broke and almost grabbed a last kick win when Nico Williams’ effort crashed back off the bar in the dying moments.
In the end, it was honours even and both sides were forced to settle for a point in their quest for European football.