Real Madrid will look to get their La Liga title campaign back on track when they travel to Valencia to take on Levante on Saturday.
Los Blancos will still be reeling from their derby defeat to Atletico Madrid last week. It was a stinging defeat and quite the role reversal after Madrid dominated the fixture for so long.
A win over Copenhagen will have done little to satiate the rapid supporters who want to see Real Madrid back on top in Spain.
On the other side, Levante will just be looking to get whatever points they can. They remain a strong defensive team, as evidenced by the fact they're 10th in the table despite a minus-five goal differential.
Here's a quick preview for this La Liga clash.
When: Saturday, Oct. 5, at 2 p.m. ET; 7 p.m. BST
Where: Ciutat de Valencia, Valencia, Spain
TV: beIN Sport (US); Sky Sports 4
Odds (courtesy of Bloomberg Sports)
Levante Win: 18.5 percent
Real Madrid Win: 62.1 percent
Draw: 19.4 percent
Top Storyline: Will Real Madrid Drop Any More Points?
Last year, Barcelona won the title on 100 points. The year before that, it was Real Madrid, who had 100 points. In 2010/11, Barca won with 96 points. The basic idea is that you need a ton of points if you're going to win La Liga.
Madrid or Barcelona dropping points to any other club is a big deal, especially early in the season. It makes you have to be almost perfect for the rest of the season.
Back in September, Madrid drew with Villarreal. Then a couple of weeks ago, they barely snatched a victory against Elche and were beaten by Atletico Madrid.
Barcelona, on the other hand, have been unbeaten and picked up the maximum 21 points from seven matches.
Madrid can't afford to climb into an eight-point hole in October.
Levante can be a very tricky side defensively. They bunker down, play organized and foul often. Then they'll lump it up the pitch and try to score however they can.
The thing with Levante is that once they've conceded and been forced to chase the game, they are a much worse side. Don't forget Levante's 7-0 drubbing by Barcelona in the first match of the season.
Real Madrid is too good and too motivated to not score first. After they get that crucial first goal, they'll be able to sit back much more and absorb Levante's counter-attack. Los Blancos have the kind of playmakers who can break down Levante's defense.
It will be an ugly affair, but Madrid will walk away with three big points.
Real Madrid 2, Levante 0
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