LaLiga returns this weekend for matchday 5 after taking a short break to allow the teams to compete on the continent in UEFA’s three competitions - Champions League, Europa League and the Conference League.
Preview: 4 intriguing games & more to expect from the LaLiga this weekend
It's been a lot of fun and entertainment in the opening four matchdays in the LaLiga season and now, matchday 5 will take things up a notch with some intriguing fixtures.
Curiously, two of the teams that featured in the midweek games in Europe are part of four exciting matches slated for this game week in the capital city, Madrid.
Rayo Vallecano, Atlético de Madrid, Real Madrid and Getafe CF will all play in front of their home fans this weekend in the league.
Now, let’s dig into what you can expect from the LaLiga Santander this weekend starting off with the first clash on Friday.
Friday Night Football, FNF.
The weekend begins in Catalonia as Girona hosts Real Valladolid. This is a battle of two of the newly promoted sides and they have each had respectable starts, taking four points from their opening four fixtures.
From Pucela’s point of view, they can make the trip feeling confident after their star striker Shon Weissman returned from injury to score a 93rd-minute winner against the other newly promoted team, UD Almería, last time out.
Gattuso Show to continue
Saturday’s round of matches starts with the first of the games in the capital as Valencia CF pay a visit to Vallecas.
After scoring five (5) goals at home for the first time in five (5) years, Gennaro Gattuso’s side hits the road to face Rayo Vallecano, who must raise their game after back-to-back defeats.
Next up after that is RCD Espanyol vs Sevilla FC, as the Andalusians look to jumpstart their season after taking just one point from a possible 12 to start the campaign.
Sevilla has lost four of its last five matches and will be looking to put an end to that poor run against an Espanyol side that recently returned to winning ways.
Barca faces bogey team Cadiz
While Cádiz CF is the only team yet to score a goal and yet to pick up a point this season, the Andalusians could fancy their chances this season with FC Barcelona coming to town.
Xavi and his boys led by the in-form Robert Lewandowski are looking to make it four league victories in a row, however, in Cádiz, they come up against a side that knows how to get a result against the Catalans.
They’ve won two and drawn two of their four meetings with Barça since returning to the top division two years ago. Can Barcelona put a stop to the shocking run?
The second battle in the Capital
Saturday’s action concludes at the Estadio Cívitas Metropolitano, where Atlético Madrid hosts RC Celta.
Diego Simeone’s side will need to be wary of Iago Aspas, who has had an excellent start to the campaign by scoring in every game so far, netting a total of five goals.
With Antoine Griezmann in fine form at the moment, albeit as a super sub, Atletico will go into this one confident of coming out unscathed.
Third battle in the Capital kick starts Sunday round
The Bernabéu plays host to the first of Sunday’s games, with defending champions Real Madrid meeting RCD Mallorca after starting their Champions League defence with a win in midweek.
Los Blancos have also been perfect as they defend their LaLiga Santander title, winning four matches from four, and they’ll look to put on a show for their fans in what is just their second home fixture so far.
Real have scored 11 goals and conceded just one against their visitors this game and given the current form, Mallorca will be lucky to leave the Bernabeu with a point.
Elche CF vs Athletic Club follows, with the Basque club looking to recover their best form after a shock defeat last weekend. Ander Herrera could be given his debut, so that should be well worth tuning in to at the Estadio Manuel Martínez Valero.
Final battle at the Capital feature Sadiq Umar
The action then returns to the centre of Spain as Getafe CF come up against Nigeria’s Umar Sadiq and his Real Sociedad at home.
It was this fixture that saw Getafe halt a terrible start to last season and they’ll hope to take inspiration from that, after going winless across the first four outings of this campaign.
But, La Real are a strong opponent and in Sadiq, they have a striker who has hit the ground running after completing a move to the Basque side on deadline day.
Super Sunday Night featuring Samuel Chukwueze
On Sunday night, there is a big match at the top of the table as third-placed Real Betis host fourth-placed Villarreal CF and its Nigerian star, Samuel Chukwueze.
Both these teams come into this one after launching their European campaigns on Thursday night and they’ll hope to take all three points since their ambitions for this year are to finish inside the top four and qualify for the Champions League.
With goalkeepers Rui Silva and Gerónimo Rulli just as in form as the strikers Borja Iglesias and Gerard Moreno, this will be difficult.
Monday Night Football, MNF.
There’s still time for one more game to finish on Matchday 5, with UD Almería vs CA Osasuna coming up on Monday.
Los Rojillos have started the season well and have nine points already, but all those points were secured at their home in Pamplona.
On Monday, they’ll pay a visit to LaLiga SmartBank champions UD Almería looking to take their winning show on the road.