La Liga Betting: Atletico can place one hand on the trophy at Levante


The tragic news was announced late last week that former Barcelona manager Tito Vilanova had lost his battle with cancer. Vilanova had also been Pep Guardiola's assistant at the club during their most successful period. 

It's been a turbulent season for Blaugrana off the pitch, but with something so sad it puts everything into perspective.

"What we have to do is fight until the end like Tito, we have a lot of fight left in us," remarked Javier Mascherano. Saturday marks the club’s first home game since Vilanova’s passing, as they host Getafe at the Nou Camp:

 

Barcelona 1.05, a draw 15.00, Getafe 30.00 – Saturday 15.00 GMT

That fight Mascherano talks about was evident when Barca came from 2-0 down at El Madrigal to win 3-2. They had to rely on two own goals from Villarreal to draw them level before Lionel Messi grabbed the winner. 

Events in that match were overshadowed by an incident involving Dani Alves. When the Brazilian was about to take a corner kick, a banana was thrown onto the pitch, he immediately picked up the yellow fruit and took a bite out of it.

That action has been applauded throughout football and a social media campaign with the hashtag #somostodosmacacos (“we are all monkeys”) has been a huge hit. For the potassium-fuelled Alves to score the first goal it's 17.00

Getafe beat Málaga last week to climb out of the relegation zone. Their defence has been improving, but their lack of potency in front of goal has cost them dearly. Cosmin Contra's team has scored only one goal in their last four matches and failed to score in nine of their last 11 away matches in La Liga.

Whilst their defence has tightened up, they have a poor record on the road against the big three. They conceded four against Real Madrid and a massive seven against Atlético Madrid earlier in the campaign. It was another four against Barcelona in the Copa del Rey. Ten goals across those three matches came in the second half. Over 2.5 goals in the second half are 2.30.

Score Prediction: Barcelona 4 Getafe 0 (7.50

 

 Levante 15.00, a draw 5.50, Atletico Madrid 1.25 - Sunday 16.00 GMT

The Ciutat de València is regarded as a difficult place to get a result, but Levante have not won in their last four at the ground. Having sat mid-table for a number of weeks it could be said that Joaquín Caparrós team of misfits are already on their holidays. 

Los Rojiblancos won 3-1 at Stamford Bridge to set-up an all Madrid Champions League final. It's their first appearance in Europe's biggest match for 40 years. They are three wins away from an extraordinary double.

Atlético can win the league this weekend if they collect all three points and both Barça and Real Madrid lose. That's unlikely to happen, but if they do claim the victory they will have one hand on the trophy. 

Select the 3-way handicap with Levante starting at 2-0, the draw will then give you 4.00

 

Score Prediction: Levante 0 Atlético Madrid 2 (5.75)

 

Real Madrid 1.15, a draw 8.00, Valencia 18.00 - Sunday 20.00 GMT

Its 12 years since Real Madrid contested a European Cup final, but the demolition of Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena booked their place in this year’s Lisbon showpiece. 

Los Blancos were superb as they attacked at pace and made their set-pieces count. Sergio Ramos scored with two headers to wipe away the memories of his missed penalty in the shoot-out against the Germans two years ago. 

Xabi Alonso picked up a needless caution and as a result won't be available in Portugal. "I find the card itself quite dubious," the midfielder demonstrated. "It’s a failure. I find the rule unfair."

The former Liverpool playmaker is bound to be annoyed, but the challenge was poor and unnecessary. He knew the position he was in before he took to the field so he really can have few complaints. Back Alonso to make amends and score the opener in this match at 12.50

Valencia were left devastated on Thursday evening after a stoppage time goal from Sevilla's Stéphane Mbia denied them a place in the Europa League final. They should take solace in yet another comeback, but the energy expelled could see them produce a lethargic performance at the Bernabéu. 

Real Madrid are firing on all cylinders  at the moment, but are also tight defensively. They have conceded just three goals in their last nine matches and they were against Borussia Dortmund and Barcelona. For the home team to win without conceding a goal it's 2.20

Score Prediction: Real Madrid 4 Valencia 0 (10.00)