Rayo Vallecano vs Elche Match Preview & Predictions

Rayo Vallecano vs Elche predictions

Rayo Vallecano vs Elche predictions and match preview for Saturday’s Spanish Copa del Rey 3rd Round game. Read on for analysis and a score prediction as the hosts aim to defeat top flight opponents at this stage for the second season in succession.

  • DATE: Saturday 16th January 2021
  • KICK-OFF: 22:00 (local time)
  • STADIUM: Las Rozas
  • COMPETITION: Copa del Rey 3rd Round

Rayo Vallecano vs Elche Preview

Rayo Vallecano vs Elche Copa del Rey

The Spanish Copa del Rey 3rd Round kicks off on Saturday. With 16 top flight teams through to the last 32, we have 16 ties which see LaLiga Santander clubs travel to second or third tier ones. Arguably none have as much potential to see the side from LaLiga lose as this one with Rayo Vallecano strong candidates to progress into the 4th Round for the second season running.

They defeated Real Betis on penalties at this stage last term to set up a meeting with Villarreal and will have every reason to back themselves here. Rayo head into this game on the back of four straight wins in all competitions having seen off minnows Teruel and Haro in the cup whilst winning a couple of league games to move a bit closer to the automatic promotion positions.

Promotion will of course be the primary objective for Andoni Iraola and his team this season. They are well placed to secure at least a crack at the play-offs but this is a coach who enjoyed a stunning cup run in his first full season managing in Spain as the former Athletic player guided second tier Mirandes to the Copa del Rey Semi-Finals last term.

Elche meanwhile would be forgiven to some extent for not paying too much attention to the Copa del Rey. Having won promotion against all expectations last season, just a few weeks before the start of the new LaLiga campaign, staying in the top flight was always going to be a massive ask and while 16 points from 16 games is a solid return in the circumstances, they clearly are in a relegation battle.

Following a massive squad overhaul in the summer, the Copa del Rey has at least given Jorge Almiron the chance to give some of his recently arrived fringe players some much needed minutes as they’ve stumbled past fifth tier Buñol and third tier La Nucia, both by single goal margins.

Head to Head

  • Last 6 Competitive Meetings: 4 Elche Wins, 2 Draws.
  • Elche have had much the better of the recent clashes and won 3-2 here on their most recent visit in March 2020.
  • They are undefeated in 7 games against Rayo overall.
  • Elche have won on 4 of their last 6 trips to Vallecas with their only defeat coming by a 3-0 margin in 2013.

Rayo Vallecano vs Elche Predictions

Score Prediction: Rayo Vallecano 2-0 Elche

While Elche are in the higher league, Rayo Vallecano are the pretty clear favourites for this match. They’ve an outstanding home record in the Segunda this term, winning 8 of their 10 matches in Vallecas even without their noisy following. They are slightly hampered here with this game taking place at their training ground rather than normal home due to the aftermath of Storm Filomena. However that shouldn’t be a huge difference-maker and while the hosts may also rotate, they ought to see off what is likely to be an under-strength Elche side.

Copa del Rey Betting Tips (18+)

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Read our latest Copa del Rey match previews.

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About Mark Sochon 2072 Articles
Mark is a freelance writer based in Madrid. He has been writing about Spanish football since 2014 and regularly attends and covers matches across Spain. His work has also been published by various newspapers and websites including These Football Times, World Soccer and Guardian Sport. Available for freelance work: marksochon (at) hotmail.co.uk