Real Valladolid vs Espanyol: Match Preview

Two of La Liga’s in-form teams meet under the lights at José Zorrilla on Friday evening as Real Valladolid host Espanyol.

Valladolid have seen their fortunes turn since Ronaldo took over the club in September and are currently in the European places.

Only Barcelona are higher than Espanyol in the La Liga table with the Periquitos able to go top temporarily with a win in Valladolid.

 

Form Guide:

Real Valladolid last 5 games – D W W W W

Sergio González has led his Valladolid on an extraordinary storm up the table in recent weeks. Their impressive run of form has coincided with Ronaldo’s club takeover in September and has seen them shoot past the Brazilian’s former club Real Madrid in the table.

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Espanyol last 5 games – L W D W W

Borja Iglesias’s double at Huesca last weekend moved the Catalan club into an unthinkable 2nd place ahead of this weekend’s fixtures. Ten points from their last 4 games is more than Rubi would’ve been expecting and an incredible chance to go top, even if just for a day or two, does not come around often for a club like Espanyol.

 

Head to Head:

Real Valladolid were victors last time Espanyol visited José Zorrilla back in 2014 when Antonio Rukavina’s first-half strike was enough for all three points. Espanyol’s Sergio Garcia and David López are the only remaining players from that day. Espanyol haven’t managed to win at Valladolid since a 2-0 victory in a Copa Del Rey tie in 2010.

 

Ones to Watch:

Former Manchester City striker Enes Ünal impressed at Real Betis last weekend and has 2 goals in his last 4 games for Valladolid. The Turkish forward was once thought of extremely highly and touted by the biggest clubs in Europe but he’s here at Valladolid trying to return to the top. He certainly has some talent hiding in there somewhere.

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Look out for Espanyol’s Sergi Darder in the visitors’ midfield as he attempts to dictate the tempo of the game. His array of passing is complimented by a finishing touch boasted by very few Spanish midfielders at the so-called smaller clubs in Spain’s top flight. Striker Borja Iglesias has 3 goals in his last 3 games so, if Espanyol are going to find the net, it’s probably going to be him.

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