Saturday, November 22, 2014

Levante UD vs Valencia CF Match Preview

Levante UD vs Valencia CF Match Preview
Stadium: Ciutat de València
Date: 23.11.2014; 17:00 CET
12th matchday, La Liga
Coaches: Lucas Alcaraz and Nuno Santos

International matches are over and its time for club football once again. Valencia CF had several members of its team play for their national teams. Paco Alcacer played 90 minutes for Spain, though unfortunately did not score a goal. He has been without scoring a goal for 4 matches now and worse yet he got injured while on international duty and will be out of the starting 11, possibly even out of the team that meets Levante. 

Gomes featured for Portugal, though he didn't have a standout performance, Diego Alves continues to feature for Brazil and he has been impressing with his goalkeeping, Otamendi also featured for Argentina in what was a decent performance. Feghouli played for Algeria and managed to score a goal for his side, while Mustafi was key for Germany in their two matches.

Last match was against Bilbao and Valencia CF split the spoils, but the team will be looking for a win against Levante and to try and stay on top of the table. Daniel Parejo has recovered from injury and could be included in the squad, but its likely that Nuno won't risk him starting against Levante. With Paco out with an injury this gives a chance to Negredo and its a good opportunity for him to show what he is capable of and fight for a place in the starting eleven. 

The coach is likely to start again with the 4-4-2 formation that has been applied in the last 2 matches, with Piatti and Feghouli on the flanks, Moreno and Negredo in attack and Gomes and Fuego as the central duo. The defense is going to be the same, bar any injuries its given that the defense won't be changing anytime soon.

Valencia CF squad:  
Goalkeepers: Alves, Yoel. 
Defenders: Barragán, João Cancelo, Otamendi, Mustafi, Gayà. 
Midfielders: Javi Fuego, Zuculini, Parejo, Gomes, Feghouli, De Paul, Pablo Piatti, Carles Gil. 
Forwards: Rodrigo Moreno and Alvaro Negredo.

Technical Details Valencia CF (probable setups):  
Formation: 4-4-2  
Line-up: Diego; Barragan, Mustafi, Otamendi, Gaya; Fuego, Gomes, Feghouli, Piatti, Negredo, Moreno. 
Tactics: Low defensive line, own half pressure, short passing, offside trap, deep laying defensive midfielder. 

Match Predictions:
Levante UD 0-2 Valencia CF
I'm expecting Valencia CF to win this match. I've been very conservative with my predictions, usually even if I predict a win its only 1 goal difference, but I feel like this is a game where the team can win by 2 goals advantage. Negredo is a very quality player and even though he hasn't had too much play time, I feel like he can get in the groove within 10-15 minutes and can show what he is capable of. I'm betting on him scoring at least one goal and possibly Piatti scoring a second goal.