Deportivo La Coruna will travel to the Ciutat de Valencia on Saturday evening to take on Levante in match day 2 of the 2017/18 La Liga season.
The hosts will be full of confidence coming into the game. Levante won promotion at the first time of asking last season and they marked their return to the top flight with an excellent 1-0 win over local rivals, Villarreal. Levante played well throughout the game and although they were out possessed by their more illustrious neighbours they did have more shots than Villarreal and won the game thanks to a late penalty from Jose Luis Morales.
Levante coach, Juan Muniz doesn’t have too many headaches coming into the game with the long term injured, Roger Marti the only man missing due to injury. Rober Pier will also miss the game but that’s because he is on loan at Levante from Deportivo and his contract stipulates that he is not allowed to play against his parent club. Otherwise Muniz has a clean slate to choose from and will most likely start with a similar eleven to last week.
Deportivo suffered a heavy defeat at Riazor on the opening weekend with Real Madrid running out 3-0 victors. Pepe Mel will be well aware of how good this Real Madrid team are at the moment and will no doubt be pointing out to his team that their season really begins this week as they were always big underdogs to get anything from the Spanish and European champions. Mel will also point to the fact Depor forced some good saves out of Real Madrid and Costa Rica goalkeeper, Keylor Navas and if it hadn’t been for him being on top form they could have got a lot closer to Madrid.
The only definite absentee for Deportivo will be Carles Gil. Gil has been suffering with a groin injury and unfortunately he has suffered a relapse just as he was set to return to full training. The other doubt is over Belgian winger, Zakaria Bakkali. He picked up a knock last weekend but he has been named in the 18 man party that will make the trip to Valencia. Others that definitely won’t be playing are Borja Valle, Gerard Valentin, Raul Albentosa, Saul Garcia and Bicho with Mel deciding not to include them in the travelling party.
Both sides will look at this as an opportunity to pick up points with neither side expected to be in the top half of the table this season. The game is arguably more important for Depor as they won’t want to go into the international break with no points from their first two games but Levante have already shown against Villarreal that they belong at this level and they will surely be motivated by the fact they could go into the break joint top of La Liga.