It has, without doubt, been a week to forget for Real Madrid. The ignominy of another Clasico defeat at the hands of Barcelona on Wednesday night was exacerbated by the outrage caused following Pepe’s seemingly calculated stamp on Lionel Messi. A club in crisis? Well, not quite. They are, after all, five points clear of their Catalan rivals at the top of La Liga.
Athletic Bilbao arrive at the Bernabeu on Sunday night in decent form having lost just once in fifteen league matches.
There is also a growing sense of belief that the Basques might be the best equipped side to claim fourth place in the table which this season looks there for the taking.
Madrid have begun a worrying trend for them of conceding from headers, as exemplified by Carles Puyol midweek, and so will be extremely wary of Llorente.
Marcelo Bielsa’s team are 35/4 to win in the capital, with the corresponding fixture in the last two seasons seeing them soundly beaten by the same scoreline on each occasion, 5-1.
Another hammering does not look on the cards though, given Athletic’s resilience and Madrid’s reticence since the start of the year, which has seen Los Blancos produce some below-par performances against Malaga, Mallorca and of course Barcelona.
Having said that it is almost impossible to back against Madrid in the Bernabeu (Catalan capitulations aside), as suggested by odds of 11/50 on a home success in bwin’s 3Way football betting market. A draw is at 23/4.
But while Jose Mourinho’s side should win the game it is likely to be another closely fought contest.
At the very least I expect the visitors to score and the statistics back up the likelihood of that happening: Madrid have conceded in seven of their eight homes games in the league this season, while Athletic have netted in six of their eight away games.
That is why you should take the 3/4 offered on both teams to score. Athletic have scored nine goals in their last three games, and in Fernando Llorente posses one of the most threatening strikers in the division.
Llorente is the best header of a ball in La Liga, with Athletic scoring more headed goals than any other team this team.
Madrid meantime have begun a worrying trend for them of conceding from headers, as exemplified by Carles Puyol midweek, and so will be extremely wary of Llorente.
The big striker has two goals in his last four games against Madrid and is priced at a tempting 9/4 to score at any time in the game.
A successful £25 free bet on Llorente to score against Madrid is set to return £81.25, with the free bet available to new customers who sign up for a bwin account.
New customers can register here to claim a free £25 bet or click here to see all our La Liga odds.
Follow us on Twitter @bwinbetting