Marcelo Bielsa’s side have done brilliantly to reach Europa League and Copa del Rey finals, but it seems that a top 4 finish in La Liga is already out of reach.
The Chilean tactician had no option but to rest his key players in weekend’s clash against Real Zaragoza following their impressive performance against Sporting Gijon, so nobody was surprised to see los Leones lose at La Romareda.
The defeat left them one point adrift of Europa League places, giving them an extra motivation before the clash with mighty Real, and, everything considered, odds of 6.25 (21/4) offered by BetVictor on home win are definitely worth a shot.
The hosts face serious selection problems as important midfielders Ander Herrera and Ander Iturraspe are both suspended, but at least Ion Aurtenetxe is back from suspension.
Probable starting line-up (4-3-3): Iraizoz – Iraola, Javi Martinez, Amorebieta, Aurtenetxe – De Marcos, Inigo Perez, Muniain – Susaeta, Llorente, Ibai Gomez.
Real Madrid reacted well to the disappointing Champions League exit at the hands of Bayern Munich as they recorded a 3-0 win over Sevilla and another victory would see them clinch the La Liga title.
Beating Athletic at their Cathedral will be no easy task, but los Blancos are determined to reach the 100-point mark and for that they only need three more wins.
The run of 13 victories in last 14 away games in the league also gives Real reason for optimism, and nobody is surprised to see odds of 1.57 (4/7) offered on away win at Paddy Power.
Jose Callejon is expected to deputize for the suspended Angel Di Maria, whereas Sami Khedira should return after he was rested against Sevilla.
Probable starting line-up (4-2-3-1): Casillas – Arbeloa, Ramos, Pepe, Marcelo – Alonso, Khedira – Callejon, Ozil, Ronaldo – Benzema.