Valencia vs Real Sociedad predictions and match preview for Saturday’s LaLiga fixture. Read on for analysis, team news and predicted lineups as La Real head to Mestalla.
|Date||Saturday 25th February 2023|
Valencia vs Real Sociedad Preview
All eyes will be on Mestalla on Saturday evening as newly appointed Ruben Baraja leads his Valencia side at home for the first time. As a legendary figure at this club, he will get a warm reception, but that will merely plaster over the deep fractures at Valencia with this team now in serious relegation danger.
It wasn’t a good start for Baraja on Monday night as Valencia fell to a 1-0 defeat in a poor game at fellow strugglers Getafe. They went with a 4-3-3 system but it was another unconvincing display from a side that has now lost their last 6 matches in all competitions. That run started with a 3-1 home defeat against Athletic in the Copa del Rey which sparked an angry reaction from sections of the Mestalla fanbase and you can almost sense the confidence being drained from this team with every passing week since.
Dominant early season home wins over Getafe and Celta now seem a distant memory. There is enough talent in this squad for Valencia to turn the corner but there is not a lot of experience, certainly not when it comes to relegation battles. To make matters worse, Jose Gaya and Edinson Cavani, two of their most experienced players, are both missing through injury here and they really need somebody to step up and put in a big performance.
That won’t be easy with Real Sociedad in great form and pushing hard for Champions League qualification. The Basque side have a Europa League tie against Roma to look forward to as well but they’ll be keen to take another step towards Europe’s top table with another win here.
There has been a slight dip in their league form with only 1 victory in their last 4. That has cooled any talk of an unlikely title challenge with Robin Le Normand’s 93rd minute own goal costing them the win against Celta last time out. However that should prove little more than a blip with some key players getting back to fitness which should enable Imanol to name something close to his best XI here.
Team News & Possible Lineups
|INJURED||Domenech, Cavani, Gaya, Andre, Nico|
Possible XI: Mamardashvili – Lato, Diakhaby, Gabriel, Foulquier – Ilaix, Almeida, Musah – Lino, Duro, Kluivert (4-3-3)
Coach: Ruben Baraja
|INJURED||Merquelanz, Elustondo, Cho, Sadiq, Silva|
Possible XI: Remiro – Rico, Le Normand, Zubeldia, Barrenetxea – Merino, Zubimendi, Brais Mendez – Oyarzabal, Sorloth, Kubo (4-3-3)
Coach: Imanol Alguacil
Score Prediction: Valencia 1-3 Real Sociedad
Valencia’s crisis is real and it’s doubtful whether Ruben Baraja is going to be the man to save them. It’s hard to fancy them here against a strong Real Sociedad side that has an outstanding 78% away win ratio in all competitions this season. The visitors should have a bit too much quality across the pitch for their out of sorts opponents.
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