Monday 23 Oct

Real Sociedad vs Espanyol - Match Preview

22 Oct 2017 Ed Mackey SPAIN: LaLiga
SPAIN: LaLiga

Real Sociedad

  • L
  • L
  • D
  • W
  • W

vs

Kick-off
18:00 GMT
23 October 2017

Espanyol Barcelona

  • W
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • D

Kick-off
18:00 GMT 23 October 2017

The 2017/18 La Liga campaign is in full flow and with 16 of the 18 teams already having played nine matches, there are four more teams still to play. Two of these are Real Sociedad and Espanyol and the latter will make the trip north hoping to move into the top half. Real Sociedad are currently 9th but with a win by three or more goals, they can go sixth while Espanyol are in 14th and can go 10th with three points.

STATS

  • Real Sociedad have enjoyed a good start to the season and are already showing signs of challenging for a place in Europe next season. They have won four of their opening eight matches with one draw and three losses. Only Barcelona and Valencia have scored more than La Real but only three sides in the top flight have conceded more. They were 2-0 victors over Alaves in their last league fixture.
  • Espanyol have had a mixed start to the season and with two wins, three draws and three losses, a win against Real Sociedad would mean they would break into the top ten. They have struggled in front of goal and with just seven goals, there are only three sides with fewer goals. They were frustrated against Levante in their last match as they were held to a goalless draw.
  • Mikel Oyarzabal has been one of Real Sociedad's stand-out performers so far this term and with four goals, he is their leading goal scorer. A goal against Espanyol might see him challenge for the Golden Boot.

    After his 13 goals last season, Gerard Moreno has picked up where he left off. He has scored three goals in a team that is struggling to create chances and will fancy his chances against a leaky defence.

HEAD TO HEAD

Espanyol have struggled against Real Sociedad in recent seasons and with just one win in the last five attempts, they will be hoping to improve that record. Sociedad have picked up three wins in these five games along with one of last term’s meetings ending 1-1. The other fixture last season ended 2-1 to Real Sociedad thanks to an Illaramendi winner. The matches tend to be quite feisty with 18 yellow cards and two reds in the last four meetings.

REAL SOCIEDAD NEWS

A convincing win for Real Sociedad would put them in a great position in terms of Europa League contention but Carlos Vela and Juanmi are major doubts as to whether they will feature. David Zurutuza and Imanol Agirretxe are ruled out until next month at the earliest.

Latest matches: Real Sociedad

19.10.2017 UEFA Vardar Skopje Real Sociedad 0:6 W
14.10.2017 LaLi CD Alaves Real Sociedad 0:2 W
01.10.2017 LaLi Real Sociedad Betis Sevilla 4:4 D
28.09.2017 UEFA Zenit St Petersburg Real Sociedad 3:1 L
24.09.2017 LaLi Real Sociedad Valencia CF 2:3 L

ESPANYOL NEWS

As long as Espanyol avoid defeat in this match, they will move up the table with a win potentially taking them 10th. They don’t have any real injury worries either as Oscar Duarte has returned from injury. It is just Victor Sanchez and Adrian Lopez who won’t be available.

Latest matches: Espanyol Barcelona

13.10.2017 LaLi Espanyol Barcelona Levante UD 0:0 D
01.10.2017 LaLi Real Madrid Espanyol Barcelona 2:0 L
24.09.2017 LaLi Espanyol Barcelona Deportivo La Coruna 4:1 W
21.09.2017 LaLi Villarreal CF Espanyol Barcelona 0:0 D
18.09.2017 LaLi Espanyol Barcelona Celta de Vigo 2:1 W

SUMMARY

With home advantage and a stronger squad, it is definitely Real Sociedad’s match to lose and anything other than three points will be a disappointment. Espanyol haven’t shown any particular strength going forward this season and should struggle against a well-organised home side who have a wealth of strong attacking options. A comfortable Real Sociedad win is expected.

About the author - Ed Mackey

Experienced sports writer and huge Leicester City fan.

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