Las Palmas VS Valencia Prediction
Last fixture from matchweek 20 of the Spanish La Liga is scheduled for Monday night, 30 January 2017, when Las Palmas takes on Valencia. Previous meeting between both sides was once again on Monday evening and was held at the “Estadio de Mestalla” in Valencia. Surprisingly for some and not particularly surprising for others Las Palmas won in Valencia, where score was already 2-3 in their favour after only 34 minutes. Later on, in closing minutes of the match, Croatian striker Marko Livaja scored his second goal and formed the final 2-4. That game was last from opening round in the 2016-17 La Liga season and few months later Las Palmas and Valencia are in a similar situation. Of course, with major difference this time the encounter is last from round one in second half of the La Liga season.
Match Preview: Las Palmas vs Valencia 29.01.2017
Las Palmas impressed with four goals in its last game against Valencia, which has been followed by another powerful performance in round two – 5-1 vs Granada at home. Thus “Los Amarillos” started the new La Liga campaign by scoring 9 goals in opening two rounds, which still represents almost 1/3 of their overall record. Indeed, Las Palmas have scored 28 goals in 19 league games and at the same time they have 25 points. This places them on the 11th position, where Las Palmas were at the end of season 2015-16.
Quique Setién’s men are confident about their La Liga future since they hold 12 points more from Sporting Gijon (18th), who will visit Bilbao on Sunday afternoon. This makes first half of the La Liga season relatively successfull and Las Palmas can feel comfortable as one of the midtable teams, which allows them playing without any additional pressure over them.
Guests from Valencia cannot be so pleased by their performance, not at all. “Los Che” had to celebrate Christmas as one of the sides near the relegation zone and this apparently influenced Cesare Prandelli’s decision to resign after three months in Valencia. Former coach of Italy failed to improve Valencia’s form and resigned after only 10 games on 30 December 2016. Prandelli was the third person who led Valencia in current season and has been replaced by the one who was chosen for a caretaker before him – Salvador González “Voro”. Actually “Voro” owns really impressive relationship with Valencia, where he spend his youth career and was player in period 1982-1993. Years after his retirement from professional football Voro was the head coach of Valencia B in period 2002–2004 and he was appointed for first-team caretaker in several occasions. Last one from them was crucial for his future and we can easily note that Voro deserves bigger credit. That’s why his last appointment seems to be really justified and the 53-year-old born in Valencia coach will have an opportunity to lead the club until the end of the 2016-17 season.
Thereby Valencia began the new year with a new coach and with hopes for brighter future. First three games were not that successful and Valencia has been eliminated from the Copa del Rey, where “Los Che” lost in both legs against Celta Vigo. In period between both Spanish Cup games Valencia missed a wonderful opportunity to win against Osasuna (3-3) in Pamplona, where hosts leleved the score in stoppage time. One truly regrettable situation for Valencia, since few minutes earlier Dani Parejo missed to score from the white point. However, Valencia gained some momentum in following two rounds and “The Bats” will fly to the Canary Islands with confidence.
Team News, Squads and Missing Players
Valencia have one game less than most of the La Liga sides (a postponed home match vs Real Madrid) and they can surely claim higher positioning. Last two games were marked by two consecutive wins, which is the first time when Valencia won twice in a row since end of September, when “Los Che” won over Deportivo Alavés and Leganes. Now Voro’s men will travel to Las Palmas de Gran Canaria with hopes to make that winning streak even more expressive and their last two results can increase the level of optimism. And if a 2-1 home win against Espanyol doesn’t sound as something remarkable, then last La Liga weekend surely was. At least when we speak about Valencia, who have achieved their most significant victory this season – 0-2 in a visit to Villarreal.
We doubt that Voro plans any rotations compared to the crew used to sank “The Yellow Submarine”. After that win Valencia will probably stick to the same 4-3-3 formation and presence of Simone Zaza (who arrived on loan from Juventus) can be really helpful if game is not going according to their taste.
Valencia remains without injured attacker Rodrigo Moreno, as well as without defender Aymen Abdennour. Latter is on international duty with Tunisia at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations.
Las Palmas is doing extremely well at home where they remain unbeaten in a La Liga game since mid-March – losing 1-2 vs Real Madrid. Their solid home streak has been inspired exactly by a win against Valencia (2-1), which has been followed by pair of wins and draws – 7. Five of each are during the 2016-17 campaign and this makes Las Palmas one of the strongest home sides in La Liga. In fact Real Madrid and Las Palmas are the only two clubs who have not lost a single La Liga game at home this season.
“Los Amarillos” will be keen to defend their magnificent home form and there are some good news for Quique Setién. Kevin-Prince Boateng returns from a ban and experienced Ghanaian player is ready to start from the outset. Another player who can provide more variety in Las Palmas’ attack is Alen Halilovic, who arrived on loan from Hamburger SV, but we doubt he will find a place in the starting XI.
Meanwhile, Aythami Artiles misses out due to suspension, as the centre-back was sent-off in last weekend’s home draw vs Deportivo La Coruna (1-1). David Garcia is also sidelined and these absences may demand completely different centre-back duo for Las Palmas. Especially if Pedro Bigas fails to recover from a knee injury and remains out of the squad.
Betting Prediction and Possible Lineups
Valencia hints for some serious signs of resurgence and they will try to strenghten these impressions. Voro seems to be the right man for that job and he obviously found a common language with the players. Something which his predecessors couldn’t and it was really curious how Valencia can find themselves on that position, when “Los Che” has some great players in the squad.
Gradually partnership between Ezequiel Garay and Eliaquim Mangala must start securing stability at the back, while players like João Cancelo and Jose Gaya must contribute for it. Young central midfielder Carlos Soler, who scored one of the goals in Villarreal, shows potential and he may start once again, probably at the expense of Mario Suarez. Enzo Perez and Dani Parejo are others who fill midfield line of Valencia. Santi Mina, Nani and Munir El Haddadi are expected to lead Valencia’s attack here, but like we mentioned, arrival of Italian forward Simone Zaza adds more options.
We believe that “Los Che” may extend its winning form and Valencia goes into our betting slip here. Nevertheless, we will place a bet on the away side using the Asian Handicap 0 (Draw No Bet) in their favour. Valencia is a side which owns greater potential and position not so far away from the La Liga bottom is not something intrinsic to them.
Venue: “Estadio de Gran Canaria”, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.
Referee: Santiago Jaime Latre.
Possible Lineups of Las Palmas and Valencia
UD Las Palmas: Javi Varas – Michel Macedo, Mauricio Lemos, Pedro Bigas, Dani Castellano – Roque Mesa, Vicente Gomez, Jonathan Viera – Mateo Garcia, Kevin-Prince Boateng, Marko Livaja. (4-3-3)
Valencia CF: Diego Alves – Jose Gaya, Eliaquim Mangala, Ezequiel Garay, João Cancelo – Carlos Soler, Enzo Perez, Dani Parejo – Nani, Santi Mina, Munir El Haddadi. (4-3-3)