Real Madrid vs Valladolid
Saturday 17 October 2009
Santiago Bernabéu Stadium
Kick-Off: 20:00 CET
Real Madrid will be eager to quash the notion that they cannot win without Cristiano Ronaldo this Saturday, while Valladolid have somewhat expectedly struggled in the opening matches of the 2009/10 campaign. Real Madrid will hope to bounce back from their away defeat to Sevilla while Valladolid will be hoping that this doesn’t turn into a thrashing.
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Team news after the jump.
Cristiano Ronaldo will miss the next four weeks for Real Madrid after re-aggravating an ankle injury in Portugal’s 3-0 victory over Hungary on Saturday.
The Portuguese playmaker returned to action in an attempt to overcome an ankle injury sustained in Real Madrid’s Champions League match with Marseille but lasted only 27 minutes before being replaced by Nani.
Manuel Pellegrini will have to fill the void left by the electrifying Ronaldo as Real Madrid welcome Valladolid to the Bernabeu on Saturday.
Ronaldo has already tallied five goals for the club in five games before missing Real’s sixth match against Sevilla, a match Los Blancos incidentally lost.
Looking to bounce back from their first defeat of the season, Pellegrini will have a number of other stars in his squad that he can turn to in the absence of Ronaldo for this fixture.
Guti is expected to miss the match against Valladolid, but is aiming for a return against Milan in the Champions League on Wednesday.
Kaká, could take on the playmaker role while Ronaldo is sidelined. The classy Brazilian would easily be the go-to-guy for most clubs, but has somewhat fallen into the shadows of Ronaldo since his transfer from Milan.
Valladolid have somewhat expectedly struggled in the opening matches of the 2009/10 campaign.
Jose Luis Mendilibar’s squad were tipped in the preseason to struggle this season and if early results are a sign of things to come, the Pucela are in for a long season.
Through six games played, Valladolid have managed one win, while losing three and drawing two. The victory came away against Real Zaragoza, but the scary truth for Valladolid fans is that, other than a match against Valencia, Valladolid have not faced any of the “top teams” in Spain.
Yet, they have struggled mightily when faced against teams they would want to take points off.
Mendilibar will know the task of coming to the Bernabeu and taking anything from this match is slim, although if he can motivate his team to put in a good performance, it could bode well for upcoming fixtures.
Last season’s meeting at the Bernebau ended in a 2-0 victory for Los Blancos, whilst the reverse fixture also saw the Galacticos win 1-0.
Simply put, a focused Real Madrid side should win this 99 times out of 100, even without the services of Cristiano Ronaldo.
Prediction: Real Madrid 3 – Valladolid 0
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