Espanyol vs Betis – RCDE Stadium – Sunday 16th December – Kick off 3.15pm UK time
Rubi’s Espanyol host a Real Betis side bursting with confidence at the RCDE Stadium this weekend as they look to get back to winning ways after four straight La Liga defeats.
The hosts currently occupy 10th place after a poor run of results, which began shortly after Espanyol topped La Liga.
Since then Periquitos have spiralled out of control and dropped into mid table, after losing to Sevilla, Girona, Getafe, and Barcelona.
A win against Betis would enable Rubi’s men to climb as high as fifth if other results went in their favour.
But they face a Betis side who have put a strong run of results together recently across all competitions and remain active in the Copa Del Rey and Europa League.
Los Verdiblancos comfortably swept league strugglers Rayo Vallecano aside in their last La Liga outing at the Benito Villamarin.
Goals from Giovani Los Celso and Sidnei were enough to catapult the Andalusians up to seventh and another win this weekend could see them leapfrog Alaves and move into fifth.
Last season’s game at the RCDE ended with a home victory after Espanyol held out to secure a 1-0 win.
Didac Vila will miss the game through suspension, allowing Adria Pedrosa to cover at left-back, whilst Mario Hermoso is out with a sprained ankle and will be replaced by Oscar Duarte.
As for Betis, Andres Guardado is the injury concern and Antonio Barragan will likely be preferred to Francis in the wing back role.
Espanyol (4-3-3): D.López; J.López, D.López, Duarte, Pedrosa; Darder, Roca, Granero; Perez, Iglesias, García.
Betis (3-5-1-1): Lopez; Mandi, Bartra, Sidnei; Barragán, Celso, Canales, Carvalho, Firpo; Joaquín; Loren.
Betis enter this game on the back of four straight victories in all competitions and are full of confidence whilst Espanyol have struggled with four straight La Liga defeats since taking top spot a few weeks ago and will be without the influential Hermoso.
Espanyol 0-3 Betis