Soccer Picks Real Madrid vs. Villarreal

Nila Amerova

Thursday, February 6, 2014 6:46 PM GMT

Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014 6:46 PM GMT

Real Madrid look to build on their Cup success with a victory in La Liga action over Villarreal. Can Real rise to the occasion and their fancied odds to come up trumps on both fronts this week?

Real Madrid ahead in Copa del Rey

Real Madrid are in the midst of a difficult two-week stretch with Copa Del Rey semi-final action and La Liga action. Wednesday’s Madrid derby in Copa del Rey went to plan as bookies predicted with Real Madrid running away 3-0 winners over Atletico Madrid. Now, they look to build on that momentum with victory over Villarreal, a pivotal La Liga clash that could advance their bid towards the league’s summit.

Sportsbooks send Real into their weekend affair with Villarreal as the hot favourites at -300 to win outright. Real Madrid take a 23-match undefeated streak across all competitions (comprised of 21 wins and two draws) into Saturday’s highly anticipated affair. Their last defeat was a 2-1 at Camp Nou on October 26. What stands out the most on this run of sensational form is their other worldly defending, highlighted by 15 clean sheets, nine in their last ten games. The only side to score on Real Madrid in their last ten games was Atletico Madrid in La Liga action, a feat Atleti failed to replicate this week in Copa del Rey however.

Real Madrid are sat in third place in La Liga, a position they’ve occupied for the better part of the season only because Barcelona and Atletico Madrid were just that fraction better. It’s a fine margin at the league’s summit with the triplet separated by three points only.

Real boast a 17-3-2 mark and 54 points through 22 laps. They drew level with Barcelona (in second place) on points after Blaugrana suffered their first defeat at Camp Nou in forever in week 22 La Liga betting.

Home form is represented by a 9-0-1 mark; only Atletico Madrid were able to take maximum points at the Bernabéu this season.

Villarreal have all to do in this match indeed if they are to turn their disadvantaged soccer odds in their favour. Listed at +750 at Bet365, Villarreal are the quintessential long shot bet to orchestrate the upset despite being a relatively respectable side in Spanish top-flight this season.

Sat pretty in fifth, Villarreal take a 12-4-6 mark to Bernabéu on Saturday, a record that is comprised of good enough form both home and away. They are 7-3-2 at home and 5-1-4 on the road.

Going against Villarreal are several factors, not least Real Madrid’s formidable form right now. The Yellow Submarine having been punching above their weight class (contrary to expectations) and are within sniffing distance of a Champions League spot, but that they haven’t beaten Real in five years and never at the Bernabéu is hard to ignore. What’s more, although they have managed to hold Real to a draw in their last two encounters – and as recently as a 2-2 draw in September – both occasions came on home soil. Therefore, even the draw is listed large at +400 soccer odds.

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Real Madrid vs. Villarreal match betting tips and picks:

Real Madrid have home advantage and sublime form to underscore their fancied odds of -300 on the outright win. Both are enough to prompt us to recommend Real Madrid on the outright win in this match as our value soccer pick.

Villarreal is a credible threat that shouldn’t be underestimated of course. The fact that they’ve managed to hold Real Madrid to draws in their last two meetings, including their first meeting this season, is both commendable and will act as a source of encouragement to them. However, expecting the Yellow Submarine to come through with the upset at +750 at Bet365 or even duplicating the draw result at +400 at the Bernabéu at this point in the season, when it’s heading into the final push and when Real is gearing up to stake its claim on top spot, is a stretch of the imagination. It’s not impossible per se, but highly unlikely.

Soccer Betting Picks: Real Madrid to win outright at -300 and the Over 2.5 at -225
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