Real Madrid will continue their chase of local rivals Atletico Madrid when they host Elche at the Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano on Saturday afternoon. Los Blancos rescued a late draw against the league leaders last weekend, with the avoidance of defeat in the Madrid derby key as they seek to defend their La Liga crown.
Where and when: Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano – 13 March, kick-off 15:15
Where you can see Real Madrid vs. Elche: Premier Sports, Bet365 live streaming
Last time: Luka Modric gave Madrid the lead when the teams met at the Estadio Martinez Valero just before new year, but Fidel’s second-half penalty rescued a rare point for Elche against the champions.
Real Madrid v Elche Predictions and Preview
Elche’s point against Real Madrid earlier this season was the first time Los Franjiverdes have avoided defeat against Los Blancos since the 1977/78 campaign. The clubs have only met on nine occasions since, but Madrid’s domination had been absolute until Elche’s return to La Liga this term.
Fran Escriba’s side have been doing okay as they bid to retain their top-flight status, which they last enjoyed in back-to-back seasons between 2013 and 2015. They may only be two points clear of the bottom three ahead of this tough trip to Madrid, but they do have a game in hand on all of their relegation rivals.
Elche have won two of their last four matches, having gone 16 without victory following a promising start to the campaign. Los Franjiverdes beat Sevilla 2-1 last weekend, but they are out at 16/1 to produce another shock by beating their hosts in this Real Madrid v Elche preview.
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Real Madrid to win and BTTS
Real Madrid to win 3-1
Benzema to score first
Zinedine Zidane’s side are still very much in the title race, despite a relatively poor season so far. Karim Benzema’s late leveller in the Madrid derby was crucial, even if Los Blancos now find themselves third in the table behind Barcelona.
Atletico only won one of their four matches prior to their midweek assignment against Athletic Bilbao, with Diego Simeone’s side perhaps showing a little fatigue as they go through what now constitutes a concerning blip.
All Real can do is keep winning, and they are the overwhelming favourites to do so here at 1/5. Zidane’s side may be shorn of Eden Hazard, Dani Carvajal and Mariano Diaz at present, but captain Sergio Ramos could be in line for a return this weekend.
That would be a massive boost for Madrid, who are unbeaten in their last 16 La Liga fixtures, winning 11. However, Los Blancos have drawn both of their last two games 1-1. The same scoreline on Saturday is priced at 13/1 in the betting, while you can back the draw in the outright market at 6/1.
One to watch for Real Madrid: The ability of Karim Benzema to lead the line is going to be crucial to Madrid’s chances of success as we head towards the business end of the second. Only Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Gerard Moreno have scored more goals in La Liga this term than the Frenchman, who is 5/2 to break the deadlock on Saturday.
One to watch for Elche: Lucas Boye, with five league goals to his name for the season, trails Benzema by eight. The Argentine forward’s equaliser against Granada almost earned his team a point at the end of February, and he is 13/2 to score anytime in these Real Madrid v Elche predictions.
Long shot: Combining our two players to watch this weekend with Benzema scoring first and Boye subsequently getting his name on the scoresheet gives you odds of 25/1. Madrid have scored eight goals in their last two home games against Elche, they are 18/1 to win this match 4-1. If you add Benzema to score first and Boye anytime, the odds rise to an eye-catching 432/1.