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La Liga: Can Real Sociedad Hold On to Their Title Hopes?


La Liga: Can Real Sociedad Hold On to Their Title Hopes?

Levante vs Real Sociedad

With the title race in La Liga heating up, Real Sociedad have found themselves in a precarious position heading into this weekend.

After holding the top spot for a good chunk of the season, Imanol Alguacil’s men are now second and they are in a three-way tie against perennial contenders Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid with 26 points.

Next week, La Real will face Atletico in what will be a pivotal match for this season. But for now they must turn their focus to an upset-hungry team in Levante as they lock horns over at the Ciutat de Valencia.

In stark contrast to La Real, Levante are in the drop zone alongside Huesca and Osasuna, placing 18th with 11 points. And with their top-flight status hanging in the balance, they are coming into this weekend playing with a huge sense of urgency.

In recent meetings, Levante have got the best of Real Sociedad so they have some sense of optimism prior to this match.

But can that optimism turn into a rare positive result for their lacklustre 2020/21 season? Or will La Real break out of their mini-slump and remind everyone of their championship credentials?

Talking Points

Levante facing a tough schedule

After enjoying a six-game unbeaten run, Los Granotas have entered the tougher part of their schedule – including this Saturday’s affair.

Last week, they succumbed to a 1-0 defeat versus Barcelona as Lionel Messi scored a goal during the 76th minute, and now they prepare for another contender in Real Sociedad.

After that, they will visit a fellow relegation candidate in Huesca before taking on the 10th-seeded Real Betis and fourth-seeded Villarreal in their next two.

Survival will be their primary objective as they’ll wade through the rough waters. But in order to be successful, they would need to solve their problems at the attacking front.

Levante are currently one of the worst clubs in the league in terms of goals scored with only 13 so far, while they have given up 16 on the other end.

Veteran winger Jose Luis Morales’ goal count remains at four as he has failed to score yet again.

Roger Marti and Gonzalo Melero have added three and two goals each. But other than that, it’s safe to say that goals are hard to come by for this team.

Real Sociedad should re-assert themselves

For a while, it looked like Real Sociedad were going to break away from the pack given their torrid start. But with the law of averages settling in, this will be a crucial stretch for this squad.

La Real’s recent La Liga 2020 results have been unsatisfactory as they have yet to win in all of their last four fixtures.

Imanol Alguacil’s men drew level against Eibar, Alaves, and Villarreal, and then they lost 2-1 against Barcelona.

A big reason as to why Real Sociedad are on a slump is due to the wear and tear they’ve experienced so far this season.

David Silva and Portu were hit by knocks earlier and their fitness levels remains unclear, while centre-back Aritz Elustondo suffered a broken rib and Mikel Oyarzabal is recovering from a strained hamstring.

Nonetheless, La Real should take care of business against Levante as a perfect warmup versus Atletico Madrid right before the holidays.

History

The hosts surprisingly own the slight edge in the recent head-to-head matchup.

In a sample size of 26 games, Levante have won nine times, whereas Real Sociedad won in seven along with 10 draws.

These two sides figured a highly-contested tiff last July when top scorers Alexander Isak and Jose Luis Morales plundered in one goal apiece in the match’s first 20 minutes.

It was an unfavourable result for La Real at the time, as the draw effectively ended their Champions League aspirations last season.

Prior to that, Levante came away with a 2-1 win last October 2019 as Enis Bardi and Borja Mayoral fueled their quick start and Willian Jose scored the final goal of the night.

Betting Tip

Real Sociedad Asian Handicap -0.50 @ 2.14

Real Sociedad are backed to win by the La Liga 2020 odds. However, it won’t be via a large margin than most would’ve expected.

La Real are priced at 2.14 to win, while Levante are pegged at 3.15 and a draw is at 3.55 in the 1X2 market.

Despite having a growing injury list, La Real are more equipped personnel-wise to emerge victorious in this weekend’s contest.

However, SBOTOP fans shouldn’t expect the hosts to bow down to their visitors easily, as they can give them a run for their money.

This is sure to be an exciting back-and-forth affair, with Real Sociedad likely scoring the game-winning goal in the late stages of this fixture.

Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 


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