La Liga Betting: Barca dare not stumble against rock bottom Leganes

Dan Fitch warns against backing unreliable Barcelona, as he previews the weekend La Liga action...


Valverde future on line against struggling Leganes

Leganes 7.80 v Barcelona 1.47; The Draw 4.90
Saturday 23 November, 12:00
Live on Premier Sports 1
Rock bottom Leganes host top of the table Barcelona, but the odds reflect that the result of this match is no certainty.
Under normal circumstances you would expect Barcelona to be shorter than 1.47 against this standard of opposition, but they have suffered too many shock results this season to be relied upon. Though top of La Liga they have already lost three times and the opposition that beat them - Athletic Bilbao, Granada and Levante - hardly represent the best of Spanish football.
There was talk of Ernesto Valverde being sacked last month, but a 4-1 home win against Celta Vigo in the last game before the international break, has seen him hold on to his role. At a time when Valverde's future is in question, failing to beat the league's bottom team would be exactly the sort of result that could push the Barcelona hierarchy to make a decision.
Leganes have only won one game this season (P13 W1 D3 L9), but did manage to draw against high-flying Real Sociedad in their last outing. As much as Barcelona should be a certainty to win this, backing them represents a risk right now. Once again, Lionel Messi provides the safe option, with the forward 1.75 to score.

Granada can keep it tight till the break

Granada 5.20 v Atletico Madrid 1.95; The Draw 3.20
Saturday 23 November, 17:30
Live on Premier Sports 2
After a bright start to the season in which they were briefly top of La Liga, Granada are slipping down the table.
Granada have lost their last three games and are now eighth in the league. With the opposition in these games being pretty strong - Getafe, Real Sociedad and Valencia - and the defeats all being narrow ones, there's no reason for panic. Granada's main aim going into this season would have been to avoid relegation and from that perspective they are well ahead of where they might have expected to be.
A 3-1 win over Espanyol in their last game before the international break sees Atletico in third, only a point behind second placed Real Madrid and the leaders Barcelona. That position might seem a comfortable one, but Atletico cannot be happy. Though they have only lost once, they have drawn six of their 13 games (W6).
Like Barcelona, Atletico are just not reliable enough to back right now. This promises to be a tight game with few goals and with Granada having been drawing at the break in three of their last four matches the half-time draw could deliver at 2.00.

Madrid on a run of clean sheets

Real Madrid 1.42 v Real Sociedad 8.00; The Draw 5.60
Saturday 23 November, 20:00
Live on Premier Sports 2
Second placed Real Madrid host a Sociedad side in fifth, with both teams within touching distance of Barcelona.
Prior to the international break, Sociedad had the chance to go three points clear at the top of La Liga by winning their home match against bottom of the table Leganes. Instead they drew 1-1, wasting a number of chances in a match that demonstrated the added mental pressure that comes when competing at the top.
Real Madrid have passed up their own chances to take charge of La Liga this season, such as the surprise goalless draw at home to Real Betis at the start of the month. That result highlights an area in which Real Madrid have become consistent. They have now kept clean sheets in each of their last five games (W4 D1).
The home side are 2.90 to win to nil. Sociedad are a good attacking team, but this is their most difficult match so far this season.

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