A low key Madrid derby, Real to go 4 points clear?
Real Madrid have the chance to go four points clear at the top of La Liga on Thursday evening when they host a Getafe side who have faltered slightly since the resumption of play, with one loss, three draws and one win. The Champions League spots are not out of reach for Getafe who will look to finish the season strongly having finished in a painful fifth position, missing out on qualifying for the CL in the final few matchdays of 2018/19 to Valencia. In order to push on they will need to gain a positive result against this formidable looking Galactico powerhouse.
Real Madrid’s last two La Liga encounters have brought under 2.5 goals; watch out for some early intent, they maintain a superb record of winning 19 of the 20 matches domestically this term when they have opened the scoring. Both teams have found the net in Getafe’s last three on the bounce, however it is tough to get optimistic for the underdogs who have lost all seven of their encounters against a side in La Liga’s top six this season. They enjoy their travels though, having not drawn a blank in front of goal in their last seven trips.
This cross-city derby will pose a different threat to the last two challenges that Real faced. They competently yet unspectacularly saw off Real Mallorca and Espanyol 2-0 and 1-0 in their last two. Zinedine Zidane’s men have won all five matches since the resumption of play and a win here would edge them closer to regaining the league title, a feat that Zidane set out to do when he became their manager for the second time in his career towards the end of 2018/19.
The 48-year-old Frenchman deserves so many plaudits should Real extend their gap at the summit and go on to win the title. He has had to cope with a lot this season, long term injury to Eden Hazard his marquee summer signing and gelling new younger players around the ageing core of the squad. The Galacticos have only won the league once in the last seven seasons, a poor period rather masked by four epic Champions League triumphs.
A dogged defensive unit with a clinical frontline with travel to the Alfredo Di Stefano Stadium on Thursday evening, with a lot remaining to play for in 2019/20. Bordalas has the gigantic task of facing off with Antonio Conte in a one-legged Europa League last 16 tie in early August, possibly a second bite at the cherry for Champions League qualification should they need it. They will try to stifle the league leaders in this behind closed doors derby.
Getafe will most likely deploy a low block and try to limit Real’s attacking quality. It will not be easy, nor will it be to penetrate the best defence in La Liga at the other end of the pitch.