Athletic Club vs Real Betis Predictions & Match Preview

Athletic Bilbao vs Real Betis predictions

Athletic Club vs Real Betis predictions and match preview for Sunday’s LaLiga fixture. Read on for expert analysis, the head-to-head, team news and predicted lineups as Manuel Pellegrini’s in-form team travel to Bilbao.

DateSunday 19th December 2021
Kick-Off16:15 (local time)
StadiumSan Mames

Athletic Club vs Real Betis Preview

Athletic Club 2021

San Mames hosts what could be an intriguing clash between Athletic Club and Real Betis this weekend. The visitors have caused a real stir with some fantastic results in recent weeks and victory in Bilbao would be further indication that this Betis side really are serious about pushing for a top four position this season.

Athletic sadly still look some way off that and they have a lot of improving to do if they are going to be anything better than mid-table. Marcelino does have an impressive track record when it comes to delivering top six finishes in LaLiga but he is starting to come under a bit of pressure now and to some extent that is unfair.

Week after week, the same thing seems to happen with Athletic. Even against a strong Sevilla side last weekend, they created the much better chances and more than enough to score at least a couple of goals. However they lost the match 1-0 against Julen Lopetegui’s men who had an xG of 0.21 compared to Athletic’s 2.36. This is a recurring theme and a deeply frustrating one for all connected with Athletic.

Betis did something of the opposite in their game last weekend, scoring some classy goals in a 4-0 home win against Real Sociedad. The scoreline may have flattered them but it was another real marker laid down by Manuel Pellegrini’s side who have won their last 4 league games, scoring 11 times in the process and conceding just once.

It has been an outstanding 2021 for Betis and what a job Pellegrini has done in transforming the fortunes of this club on a very limited budget. They’ve only spent money on one player since he took over but the Chilean has overseen gradual improvements across the pitch that has translated into Betis collecting a hugely impressive 75 points in this calendar year, just 3 points less than Barcelona and only 5 fewer than 2020/21 champions Atletico Madrid.

Head to Head

  • Last 6 Competitive Meetings: 3 Athletic Wins, 1 Betis Win, 2 Draws.
  • Athletic have won all of their last 8 home games against Betis.
  • They won this fixture 4-0 last season.
  • Betis haven’t scored on any of their last 4 trips to San Mames.

Team News

Dani Garcia is banned for the home team. Dani Vivian is a doubt while Asier Villalibre is carrying an injury.

Paul Akouokou and Youssouf Sabaly are missing due to injuries for Betis. Claudio Bravo is also carrying a knock so Rui Silva should continue in goal.

Possible Lineups

Athletic Club vs Real Betis Predictions

Score Prediction: Athletic Club 1-0 Real Betis

It feels as though at some point, Athletic are going to have a game where they finish their chances and put somebody to the sword. That might not be this one but they are playing much better than their results indicate and given their dominant recent record in this fixture, they may just have the edge against a Betis side that has been fantastic this year but is perhaps not quite as good as their current position of 3rd place suggests.

All LaLiga Previews & Predictions

PLEASE NOTE – Our LaLiga predictions are not betting tips. No profits are guaranteed if you’re using them to bet on football. If you are gambling, do so responsibly and never stake more than you can afford to lose. BeGambleAware.

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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)

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