Athletic Bilbao hosts Espanyol in round 23 of Spanish LaLiga. The match will be played on Monday, February 7th at Estadio San Mamés (Bilbao)
On February 3, Athletic Bilbao beat Real Madrid in the home match of the Spanish Cup (1-0). Beyond that, the Basques have been doing well in the championship lately. In three previous matches, they gained two victories and one draw. Due to such results, the team now has 31 points and is not so far from the top six. Athletic Bilbao always performs well at the home stadium. However, home results of the current season are not especially high: four victories, two draws, and four defeats with a goal difference of 13-12. The team habitually shows cautious football. In 22 matches, the Lions scored only 21 goals and conceded 17 times.
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Espanyol hasn’t shown anything special in the Spanish LaLiga lately. In the previous five matches, the team managed to gain only one victory and one draw and suffered three defeats. Nevertheless, the Catalans continue to feel quite comfortable in the standings. They have 27 points in their assets, and this is enough to be in the middle. The gap from the relegation zone is nine points. One of Espanyol’s main problems in the current LaLiga season is poor statistics on foreign pitches: one victory, four draws, and six defeats with a goal difference of 10-17. Victor Moreno’s men earned only seven points in eleven away matches. It is noteworthy that they conceded at least one goal in the last nine away games.
In the first round of the current Spanish Championship, Espanyol and Athletic Bilbao ended their head-to-head match in a 1-1 draw. As for the last LaLiga game at Estadio San Mames, the Basques hammered the Catalans with a 3-0 score. Currently, both teams cannot boast of high production, so it is hardly worth expecting bright football from them. Most likely, both the Basques and the Catalans will act with an eye on their penalty areas. For both teams, the main task is not to concede a goal. If we talk about the favorite, I think the hosts have more chances of winning. Yes, they will be a bit tired after the cup match. But the victory over Real Madrid should add moral strength to Marcelino’s charges. Moreover, they have been in good shape lately, which cannot be said about the Catalans.