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Home Fantasy CEL vs RMA, La Liga 2022/23: MPL Preview, Predictions & Fantasy Team

CEL vs RMA, La Liga 2022/23: MPL Preview, Predictions & Fantasy Team

Real Madrid will be looking to secure back to back wins to begin their 2022-23 La Liga campaign on the perfect note when the travel to the Balaidos to take on Celta Vigo on Saturday night. Carlo Ancelotti’s side began their La Liga title defence with a 2-1 win over newly-promoted Almeria last weekend. Meanwhile, Celta Vigo began their domestic league campaign with an enthralling 2-2 draw at home to Espanyol.

Celta Vigo manager Eduardo Coudet will be extremely disappointed with how the result turned out at home against Espanyol. The hosts were leading by two goals thanks to goals from Goncalo Paciencia and the evergreen Iago Aspas. However, heading into the final 18 minutes of the contest, the Sky Blues took their foot off the steam which allowed the visitors to capitalise on it.

Edu Exposito first opened the scoring for Espanyol and halved their deficit. Joselu then scored from 12 yards in the eighth minute of added time to clinch a dramatic and thrilling point off the hosts to begin the league campaign. Supporters of Celta Vigo as well as their manager were left visibly frustrated by how things unfolded given that they should have secured all the three points on the opening weekend.

Celta had finished 17th in both the 2018-19 as well as the 2019-20 league campaigns, but they have managed to pull themselves clear of relegation danger and haven’t been threatened at all in the last two campaigns where they claimed the eighth and 11th positions respectively. This time around, the hope around Vigo will be for a push for the European spots this season.

The transfer window has been quite busy for Celta Vigo who have seen the arrivals of Williot Swedberg, Luca de la Torre, Carles Perez, Oscar Mingueza, Unai Nunez, Agustin Marchesin, Julen Lobete and Oscar Rodriguez. There are have also been quite a few number of departures and the Celta squad has a fresh look for the upcoming season.

The Sky Blues have suffered defeats in each of their last four La Liga matches against Real Madrid. They also haven’t been able to defeat Los Blancos since May 2014 which just goes to show the difficult and insurmountable challenge that is awaiting them.

Real Madrid probably wouldn’t have expected Almeria to make things as tricky as they did during the course of the contest. Ancelotti’s side looked far from convincing in the opening weekend of La Liga as they let the newly promoted side take the lead inside just six minutes of the contest thanks to a goal from Largie Ramazani.

Failing to make further inroads in the first half, Real Madrid will thank Lucas Vazquez and David Alaba for avoiding blushes in the second half. Vazquez got them back on level terms in the 61st minute before defender David Alaba netted the winner to ensure that there would be no slip-ups during the opening stages of Real Madrid’s title defence.

Los Blancos had a supreme season last time around, winning La Liga quite comfortably and also securing a dramatic Champions League victory by making several unbelievable comebacks during the knockout rounds. They have already added silverware to their trophy cabinet this season after defeating Europa League winners Eintracht Frankfurt in the UEFA Super Cup clash last week.

Following the rejection of Kylian Mbappe who decided to extend his contract with Paris Saint Germain instead, Real Madrid haven’t particularly been very active on the transfer market. The 100-million signing of Aurelien Tchouameni as well as the signing of Antonio Rudiger from Chelsea following the expiry of his contract are the only significant pieces of businesses that they have done and are likely to do this summer.

Real Madrid also bid goodbye to their reliable pivot in midfield Casemiro as he is joining former teammates Raphael Varane and Cristiano Ronaldo at the Old Trafford in Manchester following a deal worth nearly 70 million euros. The departure of the Brazilian to Manchester United could lead Los Blancos to add another midfielder to the squad and it won’t be surprising if they complete a singing before deadline day.

Real Madrid may also be contemplating about adding a back-up centre-forward to deputize for Karim Benzema when he’s absent. The Madrid giants suffered terribly whenever Benzema was unavailable last season and the 0-4 Clasico defeat to Barcelona at the Santiago Bernabeu last season was evidence of exactly that.

Last season, Real Madrid completed the league double over Celta Vigo beating them both home and away. The last time they visited the Estadio de Baladios, they managed to secure a 2-1 victory. Los Blancos have also won each of their last four meetings with the Sky Blues held in Vigo.

CEL vs RMA, La Liga 2022/23

Date: 21st August, 2022

Time: 1:30 AM IST

Venue: Estadio de Balaidos, Vigo

FORM GUIDE:

Celta Vigo La Liga form:

  • D

Real Madrid La Liga form (all competitions):

  • W

Real Madrid La Liga form (all competitions):

  • W-W

HEAD-TO-HEAD:

Celta Vigo wins: 5

Draws: 7

Real Madrid wins: 26

TEAM NEWS:

Celta Vigo Team News:

Ahead of the blockbuster clash with Real Madrid, Celta haven’t reported any fresh injury concerns. Much to his relief, head coach Coudet is likely to have the full squad at his disposal which was also the case during the opening weekend of the season and while preparing to face Espanyol.

Augusto Solari was substituted off at half-time against Espanyol but he’s not nursing any injury concerns and is expected to be fit enough to take his place back in the starting XI in a clash with the defending champions.

Iago Aspas is expected to lead the line as well given that he’s the talisman of the side. Goncalo Pacienca, who also found the back of the net in the previous encounter, should also partner him upfront. Oscar Rodriguez is expected to take up a more advanced position in midfield in order to beat through the Real Madrid press.

Real Madrid Team News:

As far as the defending champions are concerned, head coach Carlo Ancelotti may be tempted into making a few changes to the side that took on Almeria away from home last weekend.

Dani Carvajal and Rodrygo both missed that clash due to injury but are expected to be medically cleared to feature in this game. Meanwhile, Luka Modric, David Alaba, and Eder Militao should also be making their returns and will probably be reinstated directly to the starting XI.

When it comes to who replaces Casemiro on the pitch, Ancelotti has a major decision to make. He might go ahead with star signing of the summer Aurelien Tchouameni who would be expected to assist veterans Toni Kroos and Luka Modric in midfield.

Federico Valverde should start once again alongside Karim Benzema and Vinicius Junior in a front three while there’s a chance that Eden Hazard might come off the bench for involvement in the second half.

Celta Vigo possible starting lineup:

Marchesin; Mallo, Aidoo, U Nunez, Galan; Solari, Beltran, O Rodriguez, Cervi; Paciencia, Aspas

Real Madrid possible starting lineup:

Courtois; Carvajal, Militao, Alaba, Mendy; Modric, Tchouameni, Kroos; Valverde, Benzema, Vinicius

Predictions:

Real Madrid had to dig deep and come from behind in order to secure a narrow win over Almeria. They didn’t look convincing in their first outing and while the returns of several starters may lift their morale on the pitch, the uncertainty surrounding Tchouameni in the middle of the park could prove to be a vulnerable area for Los Blancos.

They will do well to expect another tricky encounter as Celta Vigo have earned the reputation of pushing above their weight, especially against the biggest sides in La Liga. It won’t be surprising to see a draw or even an upset in Vigo, but if Real Madrid end up firing on all cylinders, they have every reason to win the game to make it two out of two to start the season.

CEL vs RMA Fantasy XI No. 1

CEL vs RMA Fantasy XI No. 2

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