Manchester United have just a slender 1-0 win to show for a dominant performance against Real Sociedad in their last game, yet it was a positive result given their usually dismal record against opponents from Spain.
Jagoba Arrasate’s side are far better in front of their own partisans than on the road and can be backed at 11/10 to beat their visitors in the two-way special market, with money back if the game ends with honours even.
The Manchester club are uneasy 5/4 favourites with their adversaries 2/1 for a Champions League lifeline victory, while the stalemate can be invested in at odds of 12/5.
United won just one of their nine clashes with Spanish foes in the five seasons before they beat La Real at Old Trafford.
During La Furia Roja’s period of pre-eminence David Moyes’ hand-me-downs have struggled to live with her club sides, shipping four losses and as many draws.
It’s not just the Clasico clubs who have troubled the Mancunians either, with Athletic Bilbao cutting them to shreds home and away in the 2011/12 Europa League despite ending up tenth in La Liga that season.
The Red Devils have scored more than once on just one of their forays to Spain since the turn of the century.
Despite possessing some of the continent’s most feared strikers during that period, United have found it impossible to cut loose in the land of King Juan Carlos the first, with a brace against Deportivo La Coruna in 2001/02 the height of their post-millennial decadence.
During that near 14-year period they have failed to score in seven of their 13 Spanish away matches.
A mere four visiting teams have bettered the Basques at Anoeta since the start of 2012.
Bogey-side Atletico Madrid may have won three times in that timeframe but it’s still a formidable record and Sociedad stuck three past both Barcelona and Real Madrid at their own place in 2012/13.
It’s perhaps no surprise then that their recent return to form has centred around San Sebastian with 3-0 and 5-0 wins against Almeria and Osasuna in their last two home games.