Karim Benzema.

Take a chance on narrow Barca win

Osasuna 4.1 v Barcelona 2.0421/20; The Draw 3.613/5
Sunday 12 December, 15:15
Live on La Liga TV and Betfair Live Video

Barcelona badly need a morale boosting win when they travel to Osasuna on Sunday afternoon.

The Catalan giants lost their first match last weekend, since Xavi took charge of the club. Betis won 1-0 at the Camp Nou and looked good value for the victory. On Wednesday, worse was to come, with Barca being beaten 3-0 at Bayern Munich and dumped out of the Champions League.

This season will be the first in 17-years that Barcelona will not grace the knockout stages of the Champions League. Instead, they will feature in the Europa League play-off round and one has to say, that this seems a more appropriate level for this current Barca side. They are the second favourites to win the Europa League at 10.09/1, with even this once modest aim seeming a stretch, unless Xavi can quickly install some consistency.

On the face of it, Osasuna seem an ideal opponent for a team needing a confidence boost right now. Though tenth in La Liga, they are without a win in seven games, in which they have only scored two goals. It says much for Barca that a price just over evens doesn’t seem enough to take a risk on them. Instead go for the away win and under 2.5 goals at 4.57/2.

Betis can continue winning streak

Betis 2.3611/8 v Real Sociedad 3.55/2; The Draw 3.412/5
Sunday 12 December, 17:30
Live on La Liga TV and Betfair Live Video

Two contenders for the top four meet on Sunday evening, when third placed Betis host a Real Sociedad side now in fifth.

Betis have now won three games in a row in La Liga and their victory at Barcelona last weekend, could prove to be a significant one. Their previous four losses had all come in games against some of the biggest clubs in Spain, in which Betis were the outsiders. Juanmi’s late goal last week, marked the first occasion in which Betis had really upset the odds this season.

There will need to be further cases of this if Betis are to remain in the top four. Sociedad know from their own experience that getting to a lofty position is one thing, but staying there can be much tougher. Until a few weeks ago they were top of La Liga, but they have since slid down the table, having only won one of their last five league games (D2 L2).

Sociedad have lost the last two games of those games and you can play it safe and back Betis in the Draw No Bet market and still get odds of 1.684/6.

Real will win derby

Real Madrid 2.1411/10 v Atletico Madrid 3.814/5; The Draw 3.613/5
Sunday 12 December, 20:00
Live on La Liga TV and Betfair Live Video

Sunday’s action concludes with the Madrid derby, as the current La Liga leaders Real, host the defending title holders Atletico.

So far it’s not been much of a defence from Atletico. Fourth in La Liga, they already trail Real by ten points, albeit with a game in hand. Consistency has been hard to find this season and just when it looked like Atletico might have turned a corner in that regard, they lost 2-1 at home to Mallorca last weekend, ending an unbeaten run of seven league games (W4 D3).

In contrast, Real Madrid’s 2-0 win at home to Inter in midweek, means that they are unbeaten across twelve games in all competitions (W11 D1). They have an eight point lead over second placed Sevilla, who also have a game in hand.

Given the form of both teams, Real Madrid look value at this price at home. Back the hosts at 2.1411/10.

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