Elche vs Rayo Vallecano predictions and match preview for Friday’s LaLiga fixture. Read on for expert analysis, the head-to-head, team news and predicted lineups as the hosts aim to continue their impressive recent home form.
|Date||Friday 18th February 2022|
|Kick-Off||21:00 (local time)|
|Stadium||Estadio Martínez Valero|
Elche vs Rayo Vallecano Preview
Elche and Rayo Vallecano face off in the opening game of matchday 25 in LaLiga. We’re getting ever closer to the business end of the season now and this is a really important game for the hosts who will see it as a good chance to put three points on the board that would further boost their survival prospects.
So far, the decision to replace Fran Escriba, a legendary figure at this club, with Francisco has certainly paid off for Elche. They’ve started playing with a lot more attacking quality since the switch and have found a system that is causing problems for teams. Key to their improvement has been the attacking duo of Lucas Boye and Pere Milla. The latter has been in particularly good form with 6 goals in his last 7 league outings and his shot conversion statistics suggest he is one of the best forwards in LaLiga right now.
Elche have taken 10 points from their last 4 home league games and are playing with real confidence at the Estadio Manuel Martínez Valero right now. Victory here would see them move 9 points clear of the relegation zone and you’d certainly back them to beat the drop from that position, and that alone would have to go down as a successful season with Elche having only narrowly avoided relegation on the final day in their first year back at this level in 2020/21.
Rayo Vallecano’s season will also go down as a success if they merely beat the drop given they were everyone’s favourites to be relegated. With 31 points already on the board, there’s little prospect of them not reaching that goal but they are in the midst of a serious dip in form and Andoni Iraola has plenty of food for thought heading into this match.
Perhaps the demands of a busy schedule are starting to catch up with Rayo who don’t have great options outside of their strongest XI. They’ve made excellent progress in the Copa del Rey but did lose the 1st Leg of their Semi-Final against Betis and have lost all of their last 3 in LaLiga, including a 3-0 home defeat to Osasuna last time out, easily their worst result of the season to date. They’ve only managed to pick up just 1 point from their last 7 away league games too so they won’t travel with too much confidence here.
Head to Head
- Last 6 Competitive Meetings: 2 Rayo Wins, 2 Elche Wins, 2 Draws.
- Rayo won 2-1 when the sides met earlier this term in Vallecas.
- Elche have won 3 of their last 4 home games against Rayo.
- The most recent clash in Elche was a 1-1 draw in the Segunda Division in 2019.
Lucas Boye is carrying an injury for Elche. They are missing both Gonzalo Verdú and Gerard Gumbau.
Rayo could have a fully fit squad to choose from with Unai López available again.
Elche vs Rayo Vallecano Predictions
Score Prediction: Elche 2-1 Rayo Vallecano
Rayo’s form is starting to become a bit of a concern and they rarely look like a side that is going to take anything on their travels. Elche are playing well and carrying a real goal threat at the moment and with home advantage, you have to fancy them to get the three points here despite some selection issues.
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