Showing posts with label match preview. Show all posts
Showing posts with label match preview. Show all posts

Saturday, September 17, 2022

Valencia 3-0 Celta match thread

 After a disappointing and poor performance last week, the pressure is on to get something from today against Celta. They're just above us in the standings following a mixed start. They began in disappointing style dropping 2 points to a 98th minute penalty equaliser at home to Espanyol. They also lost 1-4 at home to Real Madrid and by the same scoreline away to Atletico Madrid. However they beat relegation favourites Cadiz 3-0 at home and won 1-0 at Girona. Brais Mendes was a big loss for them in the summer, but they've retained Iago Aspas who has scored 5 goals in 5 games so far. His inexplicable omission from the Spain squad can only be down to personal disputes with Luis Enrique.

For Valencia, Jaume is out for many months and Yunus is an injury doubt for this game. On the plus side, Cavani has been training with the full squad and may make his debut tonight, though I'd expect him to come off the bench rather than start. Mamardashvili, Gaya and Thierry should all start. The biggest question is the defence. Diakhaby has been our best defender for a while now and it remains to be seen if Paulista will get another chance after being awful last week or if Comert will get the nod instead. If Yunus is unavailable then it most likely means a midfield of Guillamon and Nico, which means we may get to see Almeida start for the first time. I'd expect to see Duro or Andre start, flanked by Lino and Castillejo, with Cavani maybe coming on for last 20 minutes.

Our recent form against Celta has been good, 6-2-2 over the last five seasons, including winning both last season. Unfortunately, that counts for very little and if we have any hopes of a top half finish nevermind Europe, this is a must-win game.


So, Cavani starts to my surprise. Comert plays instead of Paulista and Ilaix instead of Nico. Both changes totally justifiable benching 2 of the worst players from last week. Also good to see Almeida, who has shown brief flashes start instead of injury doubt Yunus.

Let's hope Cavani can find his best form!

26 minutes in and both teams have mostly cancelled each other out. Our best chance has actually come from Diakhaby hitting the post from a corner. We've been trying to get the ball in to Cavani but the accuracy just hasn't been there. Thierry and Moriba both had great bits of skill but nothing resulted. Celta have had a couple of half hearted penalty shouts. Their best chances were when Comert mishit a pass and Guillamon had to commit a tactical foul and take a yellow for the team Guillamon was the villain for the second, giving it away when we were trying to play it out from the back. We've been careless in posession.

We improved in the later part of the half and lead 1-0. It was a good goal. Great work from Lino on the left holding off two defenders. He tried to beat the keeper who parried and Castillejo was quickest to follow up and finish well. Didn't see much of Cavani but I think our midfield has handled them well. Moriba has been especially good. Diakhaby, Mamardashvili and Thierry have been solid. A bit disappointed with Gaya's passing. As in previous games we've dominated possession. The main issue is that while we've done better than last week against a high press, we don't look very comfortable. Giving the ball away in risky positions hasn't hurt us so far but it will if we keep doing it. Unfortunately our team still looks unbalanced and inexperienced and seems to have mistakes waiting to happen.


49: A bit of humour. Lino's shot is blocked by the Celta player with his elbow. It was in a natural position so no foul. But the commentator says "it came off his elbow, it was beside his arm." Yes, that's where elbows usually are found.

54: Insane. Lino is clearly brought down in the box. One of the most obvious penalties you'll see this weekend and he's booked for non-existent simulation. Disgraceful decision. What's the point of VAR?

59: The referee balancing it out for his poor call? Cervi of Celta gets a straight red for a dirty challenge on Thierry.

63: Celta get a rare corner, on the break Moriba is elbowed off the ball. Nothing doing says the ref, who's been poor this half. Moriba has been constantly fouled.

68: Moriba goes off for Nico after a very solid game.

71: Cavani goes off to a round of applause. Castillejo too. Kluivert and Andre are on. Celta get a free kick in a dangerous position and Mamardashvili produces a point blank save to deny them.

74: Good few minutes for us, with Gaya's shot from range forcing a save. But we need to bury this.

79: Chance! A good break, excellent through ball from Andre, but from an angle, Kluivert just can't beat the keeper. He forces a save from a header a minute later too.

82: Marcos Andre! Another Valencia break and this time there's no mistake. With the ball played forward, Gaya is strong to challenge and the ball falls to Andre who beats the keeper with a low drive.

84: Gaya and Comert off for Lato and Paulista.

93: 3-0! Celta look tired, we've been threatening  and after our cross is cut out, Guillamon threads it through to Almeida in the box and he finishes well for his first goal.

After an even first 30 minutes Valencia grew into the game and got a deserved win to chase away the disappointment of last week. Win or lose the team is just far more enjoyable to watch this season. There are definitely areas to improve. The passing can be careless, the final ball often is too rushed. Playing out from the back is clearly the game plan but we struggle with presses and the players often make mistakes in these situations. It's hoped they'll improve with experience.

Mamaradashvili 7.5: deserved clean sheet, only suffered with a couple of mistakes in distribution
Gaya 5.5: a little disappointed with his crossing and final balls, but he redeemed himself with a key role in the second goal.
Comert 6: much improved this season though can be a bit careless with passing under pressure
Diakhaby 7: enjoying a really good run in the team. Never misplaced a pass and his positioning is always correct.
Thierry 7: Had a good day. Strong in defence and in attack with even a few flashy moments.
Guillamon 6.5: helped the team well with a tactical foul and assist, but can be a bit too carefree on the ball in dangerous positions
Almeida 6.5: his first full game and it was a solid one with good passing and a goal
Ilaix 7.5: probably his best game for us, a commanding presence in midfield 
Lino 7: a flair player, good involvement in 2 of the goals. Can still be too selfish but given his contribution can be forgiven for that today.
Castillejo 6.5: a continual threat on their wing and moved well. Took his goal confidently. He's now the team's top scorer!
Cavani 5: a quiet, almost disappointing debut. He worked hard but had little of the ball to work with.

Nico 5: filled the hole in midfield but wasn't that productive 
Marcos Andre 6.5: good sub appearance, making their defenders work and taking his goal well
Kluivert 6.5: very lively presence. Didn't get a goal but it's coming, needs to maintain this level.
Paulista 5: late sub, didn't have much to do but looked better than last week
Lato 5.5: late sub but covered well 

Saturday, September 10, 2022

Rayo Vallecano 2-1 Valencia match thread

Valencia come into this game after a morale boosting thumping win over Getafe. Prior to that game, many questions had been asked about whether the team could, for all the improved play and possession the previous game, actually get shots on target, let alone score goals and they answered in emphatic fashion. But in the end this is only one game and the team in fact still has 4 points less than Bordalas did after his first four games which included a 4-1 win at Osasuna, so we need to see this sustained across several games before we can get excited.

Rayo's start has been patchy. They started well against the Barcelona teams, getting a draw in Nou Camp before winning at Espanyol, but then they lost at home to Mallorca, with Kangin Lee getting a goal and assist. The last game they lost to a 90th minute winner at Osasuna. It's been an unproductive ground for Valencia to play at, our last win there came in December 2014 in the Copa del Rey while the last league win was in May 2013. 

In team news, Jaume got a serious injury and may miss most of the season. The club is evaluating the option of signing ex-Bilbao keeper Iago Herrerin as cover for the season. As one of the only free agents with La Liga experience, he's the obvious choice. Diakhaby and Marcos Andre have recovered from their injuries and are available, while Paulista and Gaya are back. On the other hand, Ilaix is suspended after his sending off last week. 

Gaya and Paulista come back today replacing Lato and Comert. Cavani is still training and not involved yet.

4 min: And Valencia are behind already. We tried to shepherd the ball out for a goal kick but got dispossessed, we gave away a soft foul in a dangerous position and poor defending meant they scored.

10 min: we've struggled with Rayos' press and have given the ball away too cheaply leading to them having the better chances.

14 min: shambles at the back. We lose the ball easily in midfield, Trejo totally owns Paulista with a turn and has the whole goal to aim at. Mamardashvili parries, Rayo have the chance again but Thierry blocks on the line. So nearly 2 down.

17 min: Alvaro Garcia accelerates, beats Thierry and Paulista (who's had a terrible game so far) but his centre is cut out by Diakhaby.

18 min: Musah gives it away with a sloppy pass in midfield, they're in again all too easy, and Mamardashvili has to put it behind for a corner.

25 min: Valencia have a rare spell of possession, but for the second time, Gaya overhits his cross which sails out for a goal kick.

28 min: cooling break and Valencia need to work something out. Midfield non-existent, getting totally overrun, mentally slow and getting easily dispossessed and rarely able to break out of our first third.

32 min: no change. Rayo still have us pinned back. They get their 5th corner (we've had none) and Mamardashvili punches away.

34 min: the ball bounces over Paulista and Rayo are in. Thierry body charges the Rayo player over in the box. Correctly not a penalty though I've seen ones like that given.

36 min: Valencia's first corner, but Nico flicks well over.

37 min: Valencia move it about well, but yet again Gaya messes up with his cross. They've been awful today.

39 min: Lino needs to learn to pass the ball. He gets it in a good position but dribbles into trouble. Needs to be more of a team player.

40 min another good chance for Rayo. Dangerous free kick and they head just over.

42 min: Castillejo fouled. I nearly forgot he was playing as, like Duro, he's barely had a touch

45 min: better! Valencia's corner is pushed out, we keep possession, Nico's shot is well charged down. It falls to Duro who volleys over though it was probably offside.

HALFTIME: We're lucky to be only one down. There were few positives there with Mamardashvili and Diakhaby saving a couple of dangerous attacks. It's hard to believe we've had 56% possession as they've dominated us.

46: Lino loses it but Thierry is strong to cover.

47: Valencia with the best chance yet, good work by Castillejo in taking out 2 defenders, Musah's cutback gives Nico the whole goal to shoot at but he puts it over.

51: Terrible. Trejo gets past 3 of our players. Nico brings him down. We give away an unnecessary corner and with no danger, Nico slices it into his own net. Why isn't Almeida on instead? 0-2

54: Heart in mouth as Paulista gets owned yet again. Camello with a good chance blocked. We get the corner clear but after the ball spins across our area, luckily no Rayo player there to get a touch but they're pushing for a third.

57 Thierry is brought down in a dangerous position. Commentator thinks we'll be missing Soler. Why? He never hit a useful free kick that I remember. Gaya hits it and at least gets it on target but it's easy for the keeper. Marcos Andre has come on for Nico.

61: Valencia have a couple of corners without creating anything. Lino, as usual, dawdles on the ball, tries to dribble a bit and loses it, there's a dangerous counter on which Mamardashvili has to come way out to clear. Someone with the initials GG needs to have a word with Lino.

64: Good free kick put in which Paulista heads just over. Kluivert and Lato on for Duro and Gaya.

70: We move it up the field well, but Lato overhits his cross with Andre waiting in the centre.

72: Cooling break. It looks like we've switched to a 4-4-2 with Kluivert and Andre up front but nothing much happening. Rayo at least have run out of steam a bit but they should be ok with a 2-goal lead.

76: good interception and pass from Diakhaby finding Andre but a poor first touch lets him down and the danger passes.

78: Mamardashvili saves us again, that's Rayo's 6th shot on target, we've had 1. Almeida on for Guillamon.

82: A good run from Lino but again, instead of centring it, he selfishly takes a shot which the keeper easily covers.

92: DIAKHABY! A good few minutes from Valencia. Almeida centres from a free kick and Diakhaby knocks it in at the back post. Too little, too late.

A poor and really flat performance after the high of last week. The team showed their inexperience against a high press in the first half and got overrun. Really a 1-goal loss flatters us. Rayo hadn't won at home in 9 months but beat us so easily. The questions being asked before the previous game return.

Mamardashvili 6: saved us on a couple of occasions. Without him it would have been more.
Thierry 4: mostly covered his side well, but also lost possession in some dangerous areas.
Paulista 1: awful return to the side, constantly out of position and failed when needed, hard to believe that Comert looked better.
Diakhaby 5: best of the defence, cut out a number of dangerous balls and grabbed a consolation at the end.
Gaya 3: sluggish return and his crossing was abysmal in this game, ruining some promising chances.
Guillamon 4: overrun with the rest of the midfield, needed more presence this game.
Nico 0: poor in midfield, missed one of our best chances and scored their winner. Can it get any worse?
Musah 4: was full of energy but his passing was off and never got a chance to link up in any meaningful way
Castillejo 3: had a couple of good link ups at the end after an invisible first half.
Lino 3: has ability and is a good dribbler but way too selfish. PASS THE BALL!
Duro 3: forgettable day, though he was starved of any service.

Andre 4: more lively than Duro and posed more of a threat but the final touch wasn't there.
Lato 4: an improvement on Gaya, especially in the passing sense.
Kluivert 4: limited time generated some moments of danger and forced a save from the keeper
Almeida 5: limited time but performed well in the brief period he was on and got a good assist.

Sunday, April 3, 2022

Valencia CF vs Cadiz CF Match Preview

After a short break due to international football, club football returns to action this weekend. Valencia CF will be hosting Cadiz CF at home at the Mestalla in the hopes of securing another win and furthering its position on the table with the slight hope and possibility of maybe reaching a position that will lead them to European football next season.

Of course Cadiz CF might have something to say about that and will be looking for a win themselves against a weak and unpredictable Valencia CF and escape the relegation grip even if only temporarily. Cadiz CF are 17th on the table with 27 points, just one more than RCD Mallorca who are in the relegation zone along with Levante and Deportivo Alaves. They've only scored 25 goals, yet have conceded 41 goals which is in line with what Valencia CF have conceded this season. 

Valencia CF on the other hand are currently sitting at 9th place on the table with 42 goals scored and 43 goals conceded which is one of the highest conceded goals in the league and way more than the top 10 teams currently on the table. Only four teams have conceded more goals than Valencia CF this season and all four are in a relegation battle at the bottom of the table. 

Good thing is that since the return of Gabriel Paulista the defense has been rejuvenated a little bit and Valencia CF has been conceding a lot less goals with several matches resulting in clean sheets. Hopefully this trend will continue till the end of this season and we can hopefully move few position up the table. Of course our midfield is still completely broken and our attack relies on individual brilliances for goals, but somehow we are scoring goals this season. 

Jose Bordalas has had great success with an updated 3-5-2 formation or a 5-3-2 essentially when in defense with three central defenders securing the back and two more wide defenders in midfield to further help in defense when needed. Interestingly this formation was used last season by Voro when he took over the temporary coach role and he also had great success with it.  Essentially a very defensive formation overall designed to soak attacks and then be able to quickly do counter attacks through the wings and try and score goals that way. 

I expect pretty much the same team from previous matches with Giorgi on goal, Paulista, Alderete and Diakhaby in defense with Foulquier and the returning Gaya on the wings, Soler, Hugo and Gil in midfield and then the attacking duo of Guedes and Hugo Duro. Some of the variations he can and has used are Musah, Racic and Maxi Gomez. 

Saturday, March 19, 2022

Elche CF vs Valencia CF Match Preview

Elche CF are hosting Valencia CF at the Martinez Valero stadium later today in a clash between the midtable combatants and have a chance to jump several positions if they manage to beat Valencia CF. Valencia CF on the other hand sit at 37 points and even a win wouldn't budge them off of the 9th position at the table. Even reaching 8th place would a challenge and everyone from 7th and higher is too many points ahead of us at this point. 

So we know where Valencia CF is going to place this season, its going to be between 8th or 14th place, I'm hoping a victory today would push us towards the upper half of the table, but unfortunately this is our reality as of right now. We have great individual players like Soler, Gaya, Guedes, Paulista who I'm sure will thrive in any other team, but they just aren't leading this team to better results and the rest are all looking to make an individual name for themselves as well to hopefully play at a bigger club. 

I know I've been quite negative on the team this season, more so than the few previous ones, but in the past I just blamed Peter Lim and the management, now I also put a decent amount of the blame on the team as well. I think the coach, the players are also to blame for our results. Bad management is ultimately the key issue, but the team has to look past that and do their thing, play and win games. 

Looking at Elche CF they are of similar quality to Valencia CF, they play various type of football depending on who their opponents are, they have a rather leaky defense, but not the worst in the league, they are only average in terms of goals scored and they have about 50% overall possession rate. So basically average stats, not good, not terrible either and its going to be interesting to see if Valencia CF is going to be able to bring the game to them or will we still defend and only attack on the counter like most of our matches? 

In terms of lineup I expect to see the strongest squad selected, with Guedes and Hugo Duro in attack, Bryal Gil a bit further back behind them, a midfield of 3 with Soler, Racic and Foulquier and a 5 man defense with the wide players acting as wingers when we attack, which is likely to be rarely! 

Jose Luis Gaya, Lato, Thierry Correia and Jasper Cillessen are still out, though the last two should be available next week if everything goes well. 

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Getafe CF vs Valencia CF Match Preview

Getafe CF is hosting Valencia CF at the Alfonso Perez stadium in what is an exciting bottom half table clash between two teams playing similar style of football and teams which Jose Bordalas coached these past two years! As you know Jose Bordalas left Getafe CF to join Valencia CF in the summer and go on a new adventure, since his departure Getafe CF have done worse, but Valencia CF had not done much better than Getafe did under Jose Bordalas last season.

Valencia CF have been on the up ever since the return of Gabriel Paulista back to the squad and have won the last 3 matches, two wins in the league and a win against Athletic Bilbao in the cup to move to the final. Decent results and the team needs to build on those and achieve a win tonight against Getafe CF, though every time we start doing well we get hit by a negative result to ruin things, so I'm hoping we avoid that pattern and are able to secure a win, but anything is possible in this match.

Both teams are playing similar football, Valencia CF has way more scored goals, but also way more conceded goals, while Getafe CF has less of scored and conceded goals with their difference being -6 and Valencia's being -2. So relatively evenly matched sides on paper and in practice, so it is going to be an interesting match to watch from that perspective. 

I'm hoping that with Gabriel Paulista's presence in the squad we are able to hold off Getafe's attack and are able to score one more than they score and we win that way. So yeah, final prediction is 2-1 for Valencia CF, though any score and result is possible. We could just as easily lose to Getafe, so all of the options are on the table. 

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

Valencia CF vs Athletic Bilbao Cup Semi Final

On March 2nd Valencia CF is going to welcome Athletic Bilbao at the Mestalla for the second leg of the Spanish cup semi final. Valencia CF got a great result in the first leg, a 1-1 draw against Athletic Bilbao which puts us in pole position for the second leg, but we still have to prove it and get a result at home. With how Valencia CF has been playing recently in the league its going to be very hard to get a good result, but who knows, I expected a loss in the first leg, but Valencia CF surprised me and got a draw against an in form Bilbao who defeated Real Madrid and Barcelona previously to reach the semi final, so there is still hope left.

Even though we've had several terrible results in the league recently, last match was a much needed win, even if it was a lucky one and maybe even an undeserved one. Hopefully that win gives us a boost leading up to this match and brings back some confidence into the players. 

Valencia CF is boosted by the presence of Gabriel Paulista who returned from injury last weekend and immediately featured against RCD Mallorca, helping guild Valencia CF to a clean sheet, one in a long time. So we'd be relatively more secure at the back, though I'm still worried about Gabriel Paulista's fitness as he just returned from injury and is immediately playing two matches in a span of several days. Hopefully he is able to recoup enough to give 100% performance, we are going to need it.

Correia, Gaya are still out injured and won't feature in this match, so it seems likely that Jose Bordalas is going to use the same defensive trio he used against RCD Mallorca, especially since it brought us a positive result and a clean sheet. We are likely to see Goncalo Guedes back in the lineup, starting over Maxi Gomez, apart from that we might see Hugo back in the midfield over Yunus, though who knows. 

Say what you will about our play and results, but I fancy our chances in the cup. Its a different competition and we've had more luck and better results in the cup, so I'm giving Valencia CF more credit in the cup and therefore I think we have a good chance to win and place in the final. Valencia CF fans certainly need something to cheer for, something to lift our spirits and placing in the final will do that. So with that said I'm thinking a small win for Valencia CF over Athletic Bilbao, something like 1-0 or 2-1. I don't think there is going to be a lot of goals, I think its mostly going to be a scrappy game like the first one, though I'm hoping Valencia CF is more dominant in midfield and perform like they did in the second half against Bilbao. 

So yeah, I'm predicting and hoping for a win, what do you guys and gals think? Do we stand a chance against Bilbao, tell us in the comments section! 

Friday, February 25, 2022

RCD Mallorca vs Valencia CF Match Preview

After the outright shocking and devastating loss at the Mestalla against the weakest FC Barcelona in decades I'm not too sure what to expect from this match. Normally I would say Valencia CF will have a tough match, but we are likely to score a win here, we should have that much talent and ability, but this team seems to be weaker than the team who started this season's campaign. So in 9 months we've become weaker as a team rather than becoming stronger.

Last match Jose Bordalas fielded the strongest team on paper, excluding the absence of Thierry Correia due to injury, so what can he change now to improve upon last match? Yeah, Mallorca is no Barcelona, but neither was Deportivo Alaves and they managed to beat Valencia CF and make us look like the relegation battling team. 

I think Uros Racic did so well last match that he secured himself a spot for this match, I think he deserves a chance here, I'd exclude Illaix Moriba from the starting lineup as I don't see what he brings to the game, between him and Hugo Guillamon I'd include Hugo as a more defensive midfielder. 

In defense we are weak all over the place, even that left flank which Gaya had covered so well for so many years, even that is now shattered as Gaya seems to have a hard time blocking some of the crosses and passes from his flank. 

Saturday, February 19, 2022

Valencia CF vs FC Barcelona Match Preview

After last weekends disaster its good to have an exciting opponent to forget about the club's issues and just focus on the match at hand and hope for the best. Valencia CF will play against FC Barcelona this Sunday at 16:15 CET at home at the Mestalla in what is going to be an exciting and interesting match to watch. Neither team are doing great in the league, with FC Barcelona being the slightly better team, but struggling significantly this season. They just bought former Valencia CF player Ferran Torres from Manchester City in a bid to bolster their attack and would be hoping to have Ferran himself be the downfall of Valencia CF in tomorrow's match.

I'm excited about this match, both teams are equally matched with Valencia CF being overall the worse team, though it can step up its game on special occasions and FC Barcelona has been one such occasion historically for our team. We are coming to this match after a devastating and humiliating loss against Deportivo Alaves, but lets hope that that match is behind us and the team does well against FC Barca. 

There are some bad news for Valencia CF as Thierry Correia injury is quite serious and he is likely to be out from any competition for at least two weeks, possibly 3 weeks before he is able to return to playing. He's had terrible luck this season as he's suffered injury after injury this season and it has really stumped his progress and Valencia's results. 

FC Barcelona's biggest issue this season appears to be their inability to create good chances and convert those that they do create into goals. They've been generally good in defense, though nothing special of course, but their main problem appears to be their link between midfield and attack and creating good goal scoring opportunities that they can convert. 

For Valencia CF we've had multitude of problems and at times it has been the attack, at times it has been the defense, at times it has been the midfield, but generally speaking we have problems all over the field and don't have a solid footing anywhere. I think our best asset is our attacks due to individual brilliance that can and has made a difference, but we are not systemically good at attacking and rely mostly on counter attacks and sheer individual brilliance to score goals. 

I don't know what to expect from tomorrow's match, if we had won our last match against Alaves I would have probably predicted a draw with a good chance for a victory, but now I'm not so sure. I think a draw at this point would be a decent result, a win seems unrealistic and far fetched and I'm hoping we avoid another disastrous loss. 

So I'm going to say 1-1 draw against Barca, I'm hoping for a win, but I'll take a draw as long as its not a loss. 

Saturday, February 12, 2022

Deportivo Alaves vs Valencia CF Match Preview

Valencia CF is coming to this match after a tough game against Athletic Bilbao in midweek in which Valencia CF managed to secure a draw, which puts the team in great position leading up to the second leg of the semi final which will be played at the Mestalla. 

There were a lot of positives from last match with Valencia looking more secure at the back as our players quickly covered Bilbao players and didn't allow them much space, midfield was still miss and hit, but there was at least a fighting spirit for every ball and every inch of grass and in the second half Valencia CF actually dominated the match for the most part. It was overall a scrappy match, but we did play a lot better than previous matches. Bryan Gil was a standout performer as he looks to be the real deal, very high quality player in a long while in our squad. 

So looking at tomorrow's match everything looks positive and I'm expecting a secure win. There are no new injuries, the team has been training well and it should be a good match. Deportivo Alaves are at the bottom of the table and fighting to avoid relegation, they have a very leaky defense with 38 conceded goals, second only to Levante who are in last place with 46 conceded goals. Even though this seems like an assured win, you can never write off anyone and team with nothing to lose can go all out to try and clench a win. So Valencia CF should approach this match somewhat cautiously and try to keep everything solid, keep everything tight and slowly but surely try to chip off their defense which we know is leaky and should concede a goal or two. 

So yeah, I'm expecting overall a comfortable win, I'm thinking 2-0 to Valencia CF, but even a small 1-0 win is enough, we just need to get 3 points no matter the result so that we maintain theoretical chances for a European League spot. Valencia's biggest issue has been the defense this season as we've conceded 36 goals, just two less than Alaves, but fortunately we've been decent in attack and have managed to rescue few points through our attack, otherwise we could have been fighting relegation as well. 

The last few matches give me hope that our defense has been improved, though once again we need more solid midfield so that we don't have to rely too much on our defense, as they say a good offense is the best defense. 

Thursday, February 10, 2022

Athletic Bilbao vs Valencia CF Cup semifinal

It wasn't an easy road but here is Valencia CF facing Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish cup semi final. Unlike Athletic Bilbao who had to face FC Barcelona and Real Madrid on their way to the semi final, Valencia CF had much easier opponents, but even so we didn't always have an easy path to victory and it took luck to beat some of the opponents. This is Valencia's first big challenge in the cup and its against Valencia's former coach Marcelino leading a solid team who beat Barca and Real Madrid to reach this position.

There is no question that this is going to be the toughest opponent yet and it would require much better play in order to overcome. Good news is that Valencia CF showed that they can play good football in the second half of last match as the team went on the offensive and tried to win the match against Real Sociedad, creating several good opportunities on goal and coming close to scoring on a few.

Everyone is available apart from Gabriel Paulista who is sidelined with a long term injury, while Jasper Cillessen and Alderete were both training normally before this match, though they might be lacking proper fitness just yet, so its questionable if we'll see them featured in the squad for tonight. 

Unfortunately I won't be able to catch the first half of the match due to work, but should be home for the second half, so there should be a match report. 

In terms of the match outcome I'm leaning slightly towards Athletic Bilbao as they are playing much better in the cup and Marcelino is a strategic master, he does know how to setup a team to counter his opponents. They are also playing at home and Valencia CF has a poor track record away from home, so I'm guessing 2-1 victory for Atheltic Bilbao on this one.

Saturday, February 5, 2022

Valencia CF vs Real Sociedad Match Preview

La Liga is in action this weekend and Valencia CF hosts Real Sociedad on Sunday at the Mestalla. With the winter transfer window behind us the teams can focus on their game and hopefully use the new arrivals to their benefit. Valencia CF had 6 departures and 3 new arrivals with one signing and two loan deals till the end of the season.

Chances are the two loan deals will leave in the summer and continue in their respective clubs, as Valencia CF doesn't have enough money to purchase either of them. In order for Valencia CF to make any significant purchase they would first need to sell a player for a big sum of money and then reinvest that money into other players.

Valencia CF is coming into the match against Real Sociedad after a hard fought win over Cadiz in the cup with which Valencia CF moves in the quarter finals and with both FC Barcelona and Real Madrid out of the competition our chances just got a bit higher to win the whole thing. Our opponent Real Sociedad on the other hand lost 4-0 to Real Betis in the cup, so they are coming into this match with a demoralizing defeat just days earlier.

Valencia CF has some good news this week as both Cillessen and Alderete have been doing light training and while its unlikely we'll see them recovered enough to feature in this match, they should be ready for next weeks match. Gabriel Paulista is still out injured and as I've reported before unlikely to feature this season at all. 

I expect tomorrow to be a tight match as most of Valencia's matches are this season with Valencia being the slight favorite because they are playing at home and coming off of a important win in the cup, while Real Sociedad are coming off of a demoralizing loss in the cup. So I think that will play slightly into tomorrow's match and I think Valencia CF might just clinch this. I'm saying 3-2 for Valencia CF final result.

What are your predictions for this match, let us know in the comments!

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

Valencia CF vs Cadiz CF Match Preview

Valencia CF will play Cadiz CF is tomorrow's cup match, a lucky draw for Valencia CF as all of the other teams were significantly stronger at least on paper. Real Sociedad and Real Betis play against each other so one of them will be one in the next round, Athletic Bilbao plays against Real Madrid, so hopefully they can surprise Real Madrid like they did FC Barcelona and these would make Valencia's trip to the final much easier.

First thing's first though Valencia CF needs to beat Cadiz CF and its not going to be a walk in the park, they've been playing well in the cup, while Valencia CF on the other hand has been having serious issues against much weaker teams in the cup, though with a bit of luck we've been able to defeat them so far. Valencia CF is also coming in after a string of losses in the league, so it will be a tough match, with a lot of changes to the team as well. Valencia CF sold or loaned out 6 players and it brought in 3 reinforcements, one permanent signing Eray Comert and two loans in Bryan Gil and Ilain Moriba the first one a winger and the second one a defensive midfielder. 

Jose Bordalas is going to have to make use of the new players immediately as a lot of the options before are now gone and he does not have time to slowly bring them in, he'll have to do it in a quick manner and I expect to see at least one of the new arrivals in tomorrow's match against Cadiz CF.

In terms of the match I expect it to be close with both teams going at each other and having chances. We are likely to still see more of the periphery players being used, though I expect Bordalas to incorporate more starting eleven players in the lineup than previous matches. Ultimately I expect a small victory for Valencia CF, probably something like 2-1. 

Friday, January 21, 2022

Atletico Madrid vs Valencia CF Match Preview

Unfortunately I've been sick this week and could not write about Valencia's last match against Sevilla FC, a big match for us that ended up in a 1-1 draw. Solid result for Valencia CF to come back after the trashing at the hands of Real Madrid and losing to Espanyol. 

Tomorrow night we have an even bigger match against Atletico Madrid in what is going to be an exciting and interesting match to watch. I do plan on watching the match and writing a report on it. 

Atletico Madrid had a small setback in their last match against Villarreal CF as the match ended in a draw, though they've not looked as strong and as good this season as the previous ones, so maybe not really a surprise that Villarreal CF were able to get a draw out of the game. In fact it is only Real Madrid and Sevilla FC this season who are the outstanding performers with Real Madrid at 49 points and Sevilla closely behind at 45 points. The fact that Valencia CF was able to draw against a strong Sevilla side means that we are in a good position to challenge Atletico Madrid as their style of football is a similar to ours with a more defensive mindset and reliance on counter attacks to score goals.

Saturday, January 8, 2022

Real Madrid vs Valencia CF Match Preview

Valencia CF is facing Real Madrid tonight in what is likely to be an exciting match with many goals. The first time these two teams faced this season was at the Mestalla with Valencia CF almost beating them with some solid performance, but Real Madrid were more precise at key moments and had a lot more luck so they managed to squeeze a 2-1 victory over Valencia CF. Since that match Valencia CF went on a downward spiral and was barely able to stop the bleeding, while Real Madrid went on an upward spiral and have not looked back since. 

Can Valencia CF reverse its own and Real Madrid's trajectory if Valencia CF is able to win tonight against Real Madrid? I sure hope so as everything bad that can go after that first Real Madrid match went wrong and everything good that can happen happened to Real Madrid. Tonight it has to be time for payback and even though realistically Valencia CF would be happy with a draw, but a win would elevate the team so much and boost players confidence immensely and so I think they should go out and look for a win against Real Madrid.

Both clubs won their matches in the Spanish cup and move forward in the competition, though Real Madrid's win was much more secure and dominant, with Valencia CF barely able to squeeze out a last minute win as Cheryshev scored a goal in the 93rd minute to clinch the victory for Valencia. In the league both teams are coming off a loss with Valencia CF managing to squander a lead in the match and through a series of big mistakes give the win for Espanyol, while Real Madrid lost minimally against Getafe in one of their rare losses this season, in fact this was only their second loss of the season, lets hope it opened the gates for more though and that Valencia CF can give them their third loss of the season. 

Many Valencia CF players leading up to this match were having issues with injuries and covid19, but it seems as though most of the covid19 cases were resolved and will likely be able to play, with the biggest worry being Soler who got an injury in the cup match. 

As much as I would love for Valencia CF to win against Real Madrid tonight I know its highly unlikely and though I think they should at least go for the win as the a draw doesn't really benefit us in any way and we are never able to hold a lead against the big teams especially, so unless we are equalizing we should not be defending a draw. That said Real Madrid have a bigger chance at a win as they are playing at home and have been luckier than Valencia CF in terms of injuries with all of their key players available.

I was hoping to see a super strong and tight side tonight that was going to give Real Madrid a real difficult time and possibly even win, but judging from our last match in the cup I'm really doubting how much we can do. All I'm seeing is we defend and defend even against supposedly much weaker teams and then we score goals through individual brilliance on counter attacks. We don't really have a strong attack that is able to create plenty of chances, we don't have a midfield and can't even pass the ball around for more than few times before losing it or giving it away in a crazy long cross and while our defense is technically good, they make so many individual mistakes that easily lead to goals.

So how are we going to challenge Real Madrid with that kind of play? How can we even hope for any other result other than a loss? So I'm expecting a loss tonight, I'm thinking a 2-0 loss, if we are lucky we can might score one, but yeah its almost impossible. I'm expecting a 2-0 or 2-1 loss, anything else would be a surprise. 

Wednesday, January 5, 2022

FC Cartagena vs Valencia CF Match Preview

Valencia CF next opponent in the Copa del Rey is FC Cartagena a football team based in Cartagena, in the autonomous community of Murcia. The club was formed in 1995 and they are currently playing in Spain's second division which is a huge achievement for a club formed just over 25 years ago. 

They beat Castellon 2-1 in their previous round in the copa del Rey and have already achieved a historic result for them, but why stop here, they'd be extremely eager to show what they've got against a club like Valencia CF. They have nothing to lose as this result is already great for them, but everything to gain so you bet they are going to play the best they possibly can and try and shock Valencia CF.

Valencia CF is coming to this match after a devastating loss against RCD Espanyol and the team will be looking to forget about that match and what better way by getting a clean win over FC Cartagena and progressing further in the cup. 

Jose Bordalas is likely to field a weaker team and give opportunities to players who've not had a great deal of playing time and see how they perform and if he can maybe rely on some of these players for league matches. Valencia CF is also traveling to Madrid next Saturday to face of against Real Madrid and therefore the coach will be looking to rest key players for the cup and have them at full energy for that very important match. 

I expect Valencia CF to win this match and hopefully not have any troubles in doing so, but I do expect FC Cartagena to give it their all and make it hard for us, but I do expect to see a win nevertheless and don't expect any surprises. I'm thinking a 2-0 or 2-1 win for Valencia CF, 2-0 would be a clean and secure win, but with our defensive issues and lack of concentration at key moments I wouldn't be surprised if they scored a goal. 

Friday, December 31, 2021

Valencia CF vs RCD Espanyol Match Preview

After a short one week break the Spanish league starts up again and just before New Year's eve. Valencia CF will play RCD Espanyol at the Mestalla in what is going to be an exciting match to watch. I was right about last match against Valencia's local rivals Levante as it was a super exciting game with lots of goals.

This match I expect it to be a lot tighter and with fewer goals with Valencia CF probably trying to score an early goal, but after the first 20 or so minutes slowing down the tempo and probably going into the typical Valencia CF play of sitting back and hitting on the counter. I think Valencia CF is the favorite as they are playing at home and with several good results coming into this match, but its going to be a tough match that Valencia CF barely wins. It seems to me like 2-1 is a very likely result, though I wouldn't be surprised if the match ended in a 1-1 draw at the end of the 90 minutes.

Players in both teams also probably just want to get it over with so they can get ready for the night and to celebrate the new year, so there is that as well. 

Tomorrow starts the winter transfer window and Valencia CF is looking to offload few players who are right now surplus to requirements and have been mostly unused subs. So players like Jason, Vallejo, Rivero are on their way out and several clubs are interested in acquiring these players, we'll just have to wait and see if Valencia CF manage to sell them or loan them out. 

Sunday, December 19, 2021

UD Levante vs Valencia CF Match Preview

Valencia CF has been on an upward trend for the past several weeks, managing some solid draws against tough competition and winning some scrappy matches against Celta Vigo and Elche to put the team in a good position towards the end of of first half of the season! 

Tomorrow Valencia CF will play against city rival UD Levante who'd love to be able to beat their 'older brother' and become the top dog in the family. UD Levante have gathered several former Valencia CF players such as Shkodran Mustafi, Roberto Soldado and Ruben Vezo and with their knowledge of Valencia CF will try to beat us. 

As you remember Roberto Soldado was a big money sale to Tottenham, but unfortunately for him he did not celebrate himself in England and after a few bad years there he returned to Spain. Shkodran Mustafi was also a big sale to Arsenal FC and he had a little bit more success in the Premier League, but after a few injuries and few manager changes at Arsenal he lost his position and played second dwindle to the newcomers. 

So will Valencia's former players be the downfall of Valencia CF tomorrow or is our current team better than these old players of ours? We'll know for sure tomorrow in what is likely going to be an exciting match between city rivals. I'm expecting a loser match than the previous ones, local matches tend to work that way and while I don't expect much change in the playstyle of Valencia CF, I think we are going to be forced to open up and play more aggressively with Levante scoring the first goal of the match.

Jose Bordalas tested positive for Covid19 around the Elche match and due to Covdi19 policies he won't be on the bench for this match even though he has tested negative for covid19 twice now! The rules state that 10 days must pass before the initial positive test for him to be allowed on the bench and with the team.

To me that is just some bureaucratic mumbo jumbo, he's had two negative tests and feels perfectly good, don't see a reason why he shouldn't be allowed on the bench around other young and healthy individuals who've many of whom have already had covid19 and have natural immunity! 

Regardless of that I don't think him not being physically present at the bench will have any effects on the team at all, I think we are going to see the same team we've been seeing for most of this season. I think we are going to play defensively as we've done for most of our match with counter attacks to try and score, I think Levande are going to score first and force Valencia CF to open up and then we'll have an interesting match on our hands. I expect Valencia CF to win this match 3-2, though a 2-2 draw is also possible. 

Saturday, December 11, 2021

Valencia CF vs Elche CF Match Preview

Valencia's next opponent is Elche CF a team from the Valencian region who got promoted to La Liga this this year and have been doing relatively well with that in mind. Elche CF are 16th on the table with 15 points out of 16 matches played, so almost a point a match. Their last match was a convincing win again Cadiz and they will be looking to build on that result.

Valencia CF are also coming to this match after a win last matchday against Celta Vigo with a scrappy win, but a win nonetheless. All in all the team has been performing somewhat good in terms of being able to hold off teams and manage draws, though the play needs to improve immensely if we are to even think about finishing top half of the table, because these scrappy wins like last match won't come often and we'll need proper attacking and proper play to be able to win.

I think the biggest issue for Valencia CF right now is the midfield, we just don't seem to have it, every player is like on an island by themselves and doing stuff independent of the other players. I think the team needs to gel together and players need to learn how to play together, learn how they all move and be able to pass the ball around securely. 

Regardless of all of that we should be able to win against Elche CF and I'm expecting a modest win here at the Mestalla with a result of 1-0 or 2-1, something close like that. I'm expecting to see pretty much the same lineup from last match, with the only different being Guedes instead of Maxi Gomez probably. 

Valencia CF need to win this match to erase a lot of the doubts about the team and show the world that its a stable team that can perform at a decent level, I think the expectations were sky high in the beginning of the season and now they've been significantly lower, and realistically we still don't know where Valencia CF is at, as we are seeing a different team so many times. At times we seem brilliant and other times we seem like lower level minnows who got a chance to compete against top league teams through the cup. This team can do really good I strongly believe that, but it needs to gel, it needs to form cohesion, we need to establish a midfield and we'll have better play and better results. 

Sunday, December 5, 2021

Celta Vigo vs Valencia CF Match Preview

Valencia CF travels to Vigo, Galicia to play at the Estadio de BalaĆ­dos against Celta Vigo the 14th ranked club on the table and direct rival to Valencia CF for those mid table positions. Valencia CF have a chance tonight to leap forward in the table and come within a striking distance against the European league positions, but with the drawish play Valencia CF have been featuring lately it is going to be a feat if they manage to win.

As you know we drew the last three games against Atletico Madrid, Real Sociedad and Rayo Vallecano, two of which were positive results mind you, but we desperately needed a win against Rayo Vallecano and barely managed a draw, so this puts even more onus on this match and winning tonight.

You could argue that Rayo Vallecano are playing well and kind of higher quality opposition than Valencia CF, but I think that is just a defeatist language, we should be able to defeat Rayo Vallecano easily in any season. Real Sociedad have been playing really good football for the past several seasons, so the are not a one season wonders or anything, they have a good and stable team, so they are a solid and tough opponent, but Rayo Vallecano should have been an easy opposition. 

Anyways we are facing a team lower in the league table than us this time, and Valencia CF should be able to win this match comfortable if we are to be considered a good team, a European competition type of team and not just a middle of the table minnow that is fodder for the 'big' clubs. Our biggest issue this season has been our defense, we started off well in that department, but after a few key injuries all hell broke loose and Valencia CF has been conceding goals left and right. I know we don't score too much either, but we score enough where if we are able to prevent easy goals we would definitely be winning. Only Real Madrid have a significant goal difference from us and everyone else, all the rest of the clubs are very similar in goals scored with the second highest scoring team Atletico Madrid(surprisingly) have only score five goals more than Valencia CF. So if Valencia CF were to concede less goals we would have certainly won more matches and been in a better position. 

And this time Diakhaby isn't the main culprit either, the other defenders have failed us more, including Jose Luis Gaya who has been really leaky on that left wing, Foulquier has been out of position numerous times and our midfield cover for defense has also been lacking. 

I think due to our leaky defense Jose Bordalas turned his focus on defending and for the past few games, and while it has somewhat worked, we've also sacrificed everything else for it, we don't have ball possession, we don't have control of the match, we don't have initiative, we don't have an attack, we barely manage to scrape few counter attacks and that's it. Even more worrisome is that this has not produced a solid, impenetrable defense, we are still as likely to concede goals and then we have trouble equalizing. This was evident in our last match where Rayo Vallecano were outplaying us in every department and Valencia CF looked lost for most of the match. 

We need a balance between attack and defense, we need the ball to be recycled back and not just shot forward every time in the miniscule hopes of magically landing to our sole attacker's legs and him scoring a goal. No we need to move the ball around, pass back when there is no good forward option and the recycle the ball forward. We can't just be giving away so many balls. 

Our midweek match in the Copa doesn't tell us anything, it was mostly unfeatured players that featured and Valencia CF won 3-0, but not a convincing play even against a regional league minnow. You'd think we'd be able to win 5-0 easily and completely dominate play, but even that seems like a high order for this Valencia CF.

So who knows what Valencia CF will show up tonight, I'm hoping we see the strong and secure Valencia CF from the start of the season, where we had a good balance in our play and were quite exciting to watch as well. 

Sunday, November 7, 2021

Valencia CF vs Atletico Madrid Match Preview

Valencia CF showed signs of life last week after managing to beat Villarreal CF and end a terrible streak of 7 matches without a win. Now the team has to continue in a winning manner in order for that result to matter, otherwise we are just back to square one, but unfortunately for Valencia CF it just so happens that their next opponent is Atletico Madrid who have been solid this year and are sitting at 4th position on the table with 22 points. As always Atletico Madrid are a rugged, tough team and are playing physical and aggressive football, focusing on mostly defending and then on occasions hitting the opponents with fast attacks, which is similar to how Valencia CF has played this season, so it would be interesting to see which team has more control of the ball and takes the initiative.

I think Valencia CF can actually get a decent result against Atletico Madrid as long as we fix our leaky defense, because if you look at the statistics we do seem to score reasonable amount of goals, even if we aren't creating a ton of chances and missing some very good ones, statistically speaking we should be getting better results, if not for the terrible defending. Its mostly been individual errors, players just not following their mark close enough and allowing too much space for them to do whatever, so defenders need to be more aggressive, but not overly as to give away needless penalties.

Good news for Valencia CF is that players like Correia, Cheryshev, Racic will be available for this match, though all of them are likely to start from the bench as a precaution, though Carlos Soler is going to be starting the match. Jose Bordalas is likely to reinforce the midfield, similar to the last match as to avoid conceding goals and look for goals on counter attacks, but also beat Atletico's midfield as well and negate them of the ability to start dangerous attacks.

Valencia CF Squad: Cillessen, Correia, Diakhaby, Alderete, Gaya; Helder Costa, Hugo, Soler, Wass, Andre; Guedes

Winning Probability: Valencia CF 25% Draw 50% Atletico Madrid 25%

Result Prediction: Both teams play similar football, though Atletico much more effectively of course and they've been perfecting their play style for close to a decade now, so Atletico Madrid are the slight favorites, but not by much since they also tend to struggle to score goals and their wins are marginal with just one goal difference, usually something like 1-0. So Valencia CF has a good chance to get a positive result, but its going to be very hard of course, so I'm thinking this is most likely going to be a draw. Win would be amazing, it would propel Valencia CF really hard and could potentially put us back in the European competition fight, but a draw would be a decent result as well against a very dangerous and solid opponent!