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Real Madrid vs. Celta Vigo: Date, Time, Live Stream, TV Info and Preview

VALENCIA, SPAIN - DECEMBER 22:  Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid celebrates after scoring during the La Liga match between Valencia CF and Real Madrid CF at Estadio Mestalla on December 22, 2013 in Valencia, Spain.  (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)
Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images
Timothy RappFeatured ColumnistJanuary 6, 2014

Before we get to the obvious, let's give Celta Vigo some credit—the team has actually been better on the road than at home this season, taking nine points on their travels as opposed to seven at their home digs.

So perhaps they won't be intimidated by a date at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu to face Real Madrid. Perhaps.

Now that we've addressed that, we can get to the obvious—Los Blancos are massive favorites in this match and really need to ensure all three points in contests like these, as they trail both Barcelona and Atletico Madrid by five points on La Liga's table. 

Let's take a closer look at this La Liga showdown.

 

When: Monday, January 6 at 1 p.m. ET (6 p.m. GMT)

WhereEstadio Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid, Spain

Watch: beIN Sport; beIN Sport Play; Sky Go (U.K.)

Odds: Real Madrid (79.1 percent), Celta Vigo (8.5 percent) and draw (12.4 percent), according to Bloomberg Sports

 

Key Storylines

PAMPLONA, SPAIN - DECEMBER 14: Gareth Bale of Real Madrid CF controls the ball during the La Liga match between CA Osasuna and Real Madrid CF at Estadio El Sadar de Navarra on December 14, 2013 in Pamplona, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Im
Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

Real Madrid will likely be bolstered by the return of Gareth Bale and Fabio Coentrao in this contest, as both were able to return to full training ahead of the match, according to Mark Doyle of Goal.com.

And while the club will be expected to win quite easily in this contest, the pressure to perform is always present. Former Real Madrid defender Paul Breitner reminded manager Carlo Ancelotti of that fact in recent comments he made, via Joe Wright of Goal.com:

He is a great coach who has won major titles. He will do very well, but he needs a bit of time to adapt his ideas into the great squad he has. But then, in Madrid, there is no time to acclimatise.

No, there certainly isn't.

For Real Madrid, the issue hasn't been the attack. The team has 49 goals in league play this season, tied with Barcelona for the most in Spain, led by Cristiano Ronaldo (18), Karim Benzema (eight), Gareth Bale (seven) and Isco (six). There aren't many teams in the world that can boast that type of firepower in its starting lineup.

Rather, it is the defense that has been suspect at times, allowing 21 goals on the season.

Of course, given that Celta has scored precisely that amount of goals in league play, Los Blancos might not be challenged in the back four too often. Alex Lopez leads Celta with five goals, and he'll certainly be the focus of Los Blancos.

 

Prediction

It would be pretty shocking if Real Madrid lost at home to a team they are 25 points ahead of on the table. Los Blancos have seven wins and just one loss at their home digs this season, scoring 27 and allowing just eight.

With the squad returning to health, one would expect them to handle Celta with relative ease. La Liga can be chock-full of surprises during any given week, but this won't be one of them.

Real Madrid wins, 3-0.

 

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