Ben Crump takes a look at the opening fixture of the weekend as Rayo Vallecano take on Eibar on Friday evening at Estadio de Vallecas.
Date: Friday, 30 November 2018 / Kick-Off at 20:00 UK / 21:00 CET / Venue: Estadio de Vallecas (Madrid)
Eibar broke into the top ten of the La Liga table with their somewhat shock win over Real Madrid last weekend.
The 3-0 victory at Ipurua saw the Basque side dominate Santi Solari’s Madrid as goals from Gonzalo Escalante, Sergi Enrich and Kike sealed all the points.
In particular, the display of Marc Cucurella was something to behold. The young Barcelona loanee was remarkable in supplying all three assists and he will be one to watch as they travel to face Rayo.
Jose Mendilibar’s side will head into the game in good spirits then and they have the added bonus of not conceding a league goal in 180 minutes of football.
Rayo were beaten 3-0 by Valencia and they had Luis Advincula sent off so he will now miss this game.
Having met each other 15 times in Spain’s top flight over the years, Rayo are narrowly in front with one win, but Eibar normally play well on their visit to Vallecas.
Advincula is suspended for the home side after picking up two yellow cards against Valencia. Emiliano Velazquez may be asked to fill in at right-back. Tito is a more natural fit, but has just returned from injury. Santi Comesana is expected to continue in central midfield at Gorka Elustondo’s expense.
Pape Diop and Anaitz Arbilla have both returned from bans, but the away side will likely stick with the XI that beat Real Madrid. Marc Cucurella will continue on the left-hand side of midfield after a terrific showing at Ipurua. Gonzalo Escalante could also hold his place in central midfield, after an all-action performance and goal last weekend.
Expected XI (Rayo):
Dimitrievski, Moreno, Galvez, Amat, Tito, Trejo, Comesana, Imbula, Pozo, Tomas, Embarba
Expected XI (Eibar):
Riesgo, Pena, Ramis, Oliviera, Cote, Orellana, Jordan, Escalante, Cucurella, Kike, Enrich
2-0 Eibar. Another win and clean sheet for Mendilibar’s men….