There is a double dose of LaLiga Santander football this week; the first midweek matchday of the season has arrived! 10 top-flight fixtures will be played from Tuesday through Thursday, with some regional rivalries and classic clashes on the agenda.
At 10pm CEST on Tuesday night, there are two matches at the same time as Athletic Club host Rayo Vallecano and as Levante UD take on RC Celta. The first of those two fixtures should be particularly special as Rayo coach Andoni Iraola returns to San Mamés to take on the club he captained during a long career in Bilbao. Iraola hasn’t yet faced Athletic Club since launching his managerial career and now he’ll finally get to face his former side. Plus, with Radamel Falcao having just scored on his Rayo debut on Saturday, Iraola boasts the firepower in his squad to harbour hopes of a positive result.
Four more matches follow on the Wednesday of this midweek round, including Sevilla FC vs Valencia CF at 7.30pm CEST. This is a classic of LaLiga Santander, with 152 previous meetings between these clubs in Spanish football’s top division. The past three encounters have all been 1-0 wins for Sevilla, so Los Che will look to change that after what has been a positive start to their season.
At that same 7.30pm CEST kick-off time is RCD Espanyol vs D. Alavés, with the latter side’s coach Javi Calleja under serious pressure to collect at least a point. The Basque side have lost every match they’ve played so far, so they’ll view this trip to the newly promoted Catalans as a big opportunity for the first point, or points, of the season.
Real Madrid are in action at 10pm CEST on Wednesday night, taking on RCD Mallorca in what will actually be their out-on-loan forward Takefusa Kubo’s first ever match at the Santiago Bernabéu. It was an emotional return to their home ground for Los Blancos last time out, as they won a 5-2 thriller against Celta, and they’ll look to channel some of that attacking spirit in front of goal once again.
Also at 10pm CEST, Villarreal CF vs Elche CF pits together two clubs from opposite ends of the Valencian Community. As is the case for all regional rivalries this season, that match will use PUMA’s special ADRENALINA ball.
Three more LaLiga Santander fixtures follow on Thursday, with CA Osasuna vs Real Betis and Granada CF vs Real Sociedad both kicking off at 7.30pm CEST. The first of those games sees two high-powered attacks go head-to-head, as Osasuna and Betis boast various top-class forward players, such as Kike García, Ante Budimir, Chimy Ávila, Borja Iglesias, Nabil Fekir and Sergio Canales. The latter match is a clash between two teams who prioritise possession, with coaches Robert Moreno and Imanol Alguacil renowned for encouraging their players to make the ball their own. That should make for an interesting tactical battle.
The Matchday 6 action then concludes at 10pm CEST on Thursday with Cádiz CF vs FC Barcelona. The Andalusians won this fixture last season and Barça know that it won’t be easy, especially with the passionate fans back in the stands of the Estadio Nuevo Mirandilla. Under the floodlights, that should be a thrilling watch to bring this midweek matchday to a close.