Atletico Baleares vs Valencia predictions and match preview for Sunday’s Copa del Rey fixture. Read on for expert analysis, the head-to-head and team news as Los Che hope to avoid an upset in Mallorca.
|Date||Sunday 16th January 2022|
|Kick-Off||12:00 (local time)|
|Competition||Copa del Rey|
Atletico Baleares vs Valencia Preview
Sunday is a rare day when we will get Spanish football action in the league, as well as both domestic cup competitions. Things kick off in Palma de Mallorca where Atletico Baleares are hoping to spring a surprise by knocking out top flight Valencia and taking their place in the Quarter-Finals.
That would be a fantastic achievement for a third tier side and Atletico Baleares are the only sides from outside the top two divisions still standing. They’ve already beaten two LaLiga teams on their way to the last sixteen, hammering Getafe 5-0 before a hard fought 2-1 win over Celta Vigo in the last round. Forward Manel Martínez was the star with a brace to see off the Galicians and ironically their toughest test in the competition so far came in Round 1 when they were taken to penalties by minnows Calahorra.
As we saw with Mirandes a couple of seasons ago, this format does give lower league teams the chance to really build up a bit of momentum and get a taste for knocking out top flight sides on their own ground. Atletico Baleares will be full of belief heading into this and they have been enjoying a really solid season overall with the Mallorca based side currently in contention for promotion to the Segunda Division for the first time since the 1960’s.
This is a Valencia side that is having a reasonably solid first season under Jose Bordalas but it’s not one that will really spread fear into their opponents. Valencia have lost their last two league games and were very much second best in a 4-1 defeat at the Santiago Bernabeu last time out. Their defensive problems have really been highlighted of late with only the bottom two of Cadiz and Levante having let in more goals in LaLiga this term.
The continued injury problems of Gabriel Paulista are a big factor in that as he is simply irreplaceable in the heart of their defence with both his leadership and defensive attributes a big miss. He is currently refusing the option of surgery which would potentially rule him out for the remainder of the campaign but his struggles are a concern and Bordalas hasn’t really found any answers for their defensive woes, strange for a coach who has largely built his reputation on making teams tough to break down.
Atletico Baleares were down to only 12 available first team players in the week with six positive Covid tests reported. However they were hopeful of recovering a number of players before kick-off on Sunday.
Daniel Wass, Carlos Soler, Gabriel Paulista and Maxi Gomez are significant injury absentees for Valencia who have also reported four positive Covid-19 tests leaving them needing to rely on a number of fringe players here.
Atletico Baleares vs Valencia Predictions
Score Prediction: Atletico Baleares 2-1 Valencia
There is all the making of an upset here, although much may depend on the home team’s ability to get players back having reported a number of positive Covid-19 tests this week. Atletico Baleares are playing well and will take the huge confidence boost from having already beaten two top flight teams at home in this competition. Valencia are expected to rotate in some areas but also have a large number of significant selection issues and are leaking goals. As long as they aren’t without too many key men, the hosts have every chance of confirming themselves as the underdog story of this season’s Copa del Rey by claiming another scalp.
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.