Real Madrid vs Rayo Vallecano LIVE Football Match Score 26 Feb 2022

Real Madrid vs Rayo Vallecano LIVE Football Match Score 26 Feb 2022

Real Madrid vs Rayo Vallecano LIVE Football Match Score 26 Feb 2022

Match Info

Start date: 26 Feb 2022 22:30
Location: Madrid Venue: Estadio de Vallecas
Referee: Isidro Diaz de Mera Escuderos, Spain
Avg. cards:

0.31 6.15

About the match

Real Madrid will be bidding to move nine points clear at the top of the La Liga table when they make the trip to Rayo Vallecano on Saturday evening.

Los Blancos are currently six points clear of second-placed Sevilla in the battle for the title, while Rayo occupy 11th position, 11 points clear of the relegation zone ahead of the next set of fixtures.

Rayo enjoyed a brilliant first half of the 2021-22 La Liga campaign, which led to suggestions that they could potentially challenge for a top-six finish this season, but their form has been disappointing in recent weeks.

Indeed, Los Franjirrojos are without a win in the league since December 18, picking up just one point from their last six matches, losing their last four against Athletic Bilbao, Celta Vigo, Osasuna and Elche.

It has still been a successful season for the capital outfit, though, as they only secured a return to La Liga through last term’s Segunda Division playoffs, therefore consolidating at this level was always going to be the priority, and as mentioned, they are 11 points clear of the relegation zone.

Andoni Iraola’s side have been excellent at home this season, picking up 26 points from 12 matches, which is the third-best record in the division behind Real Madrid (31) and Sevilla (30).

Rayo are also in the semi-finals of the Copa del Rey but face a battle to reach the final of the competition, having suffered a 2-1 home defeat to Real Betis in the first leg of their last-four affair on February 9.

Real Madrid, meanwhile, recorded a 3-0 victory over Alaves in the league last weekend, with Marco Asensio, Vinicius Junior and Karim Benzema on the scoresheet at Bernabeu.

Carlo Ancelotti’s side are currently top of the table, six points clear of second-placed Sevilla, who are not in action until Sunday against Real Betis, so they will have the chance to move nine points clear here.

Barcelona have shown improvement under Xavi but are too far behind to launch a challenge, while Atletico Madrid will not be defending their title unless something extraordinary happens, with Real Madrid’s competition this season coming from Sevilla, who are desperately trying to stay in touch with Los Blancos.

Real Madrid lost 1-0 at Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg of their last-16 Champions League clash but are unbeaten in the league since the start of January, winning three of their last five against Valencia, Granada and Alaves to place themselves in a strong position at the summit.

Los Blancos also have the best away record in La Liga this term, collecting 26 points from their 12 matches, but they suffered a 1-0 defeat when they last travelled to Rayo in the league back in April 2019.

Rayo will again be without the services of Martin Merquelanz due to a knee problem, while Unai Lopez (hip) and Jose Pozo (COVID-19) remain doubts for the home side ahead of the contest.

The capital side did not pick up any fresh concerns in the defeat to Elche, but head coach Iraola is likely to resist the temptation to make wholesale changes, with Sergi Guardiola again expected to lead the line, leaving Radamel Falcao on the bench once again.

There are also unlikely to be any surprises when it comes to Rayo’s formation, with a 4-2-3-1 formation set to include Oscar Trejo in the number 10 spot, and Isi Palazon and Alvaro Garcia out wide.

As for Real Madrid, Mariano Diaz should overcome a pelvic problem, while Federico Valverde is expected to recover in time, with the midfielder suffering with a stomach virus earlier this week.

The visitors will be without two players, though, with David Alaba and Gareth Bale suffering with muscular overload, so Nacho could come into the back four.

Rodrygo and Eden Hazard are all options to feature on the right, but Asensio’s goal against Alaves should mean that the Spaniard keeps his spot alongside Vinicius and Benzema.

Toni Kroos was rested last weekend, but the German should be back in the side on Saturday even if Valverde can prove his fitness following an illness.

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