Villarreal (@4.5) vs Real Madrid (@1.61)

Our Prediction:

Real Madrid will win

Villarreal – Real Madrid Match Prediction | 20-08-2019

The new man has at least had an extended period of nearly three weeks without a game to work with his side but his first game at the helm was a relatively unconvincing 2-2 draw with bottom club Huesca. For the third match in a row, they face a team in the relegation zone here with Villarreal enduring a torrid season so far. They sacked Javier Calleja and appointed Luis Garca as their new boss last month.

While theyve not convinced, they have invariably found a way to see matches out and with the odds reasonable for once, backing Real Madrid to Win looks good here, especially given only Huesca have a worse home record this season in La Liga than Villarreal. A record of 11 wins from 13 competitive outings under Solari is also impressive, with one of the games he didnt win being a dead rubber in the Champions League.

Karl Toko Ekambi is a professional footballer who plays for Ligue 1 club Angers as a striker. The 183-cm-tall attacker plays for Cameroon and it has to be noted that he made his senior debut for les Lions Indomptables in a 3-2 win over Burkina Faso back in June, 2015. Ekambi was born in Paris on September 14 1992, but he does not represent les Tricolores on the international stage.

The likes of Alfredo Di Stefano, Zinedine Zidane, Raul Gonzalez Blanco, David Beckham and Iker Casillas are star players who were part of the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu outfit in the past. Real Madrids home kit is white and, as a result, the teams nickname is los Blancos (the Whites). Real Madrids bitterest rivals are Barcelona, but the rivalry between local rivals Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid is big as well.

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The Cameroonian footballer played for Paris FC during his youth career and he made his first-team debut for the capital club on April 26, 2011 in a 2-2 draw with Beauvais. Ekambi came as a substitute in the 77th minute of the match, replacing fellow attacker Mengolo. Karl Toko Ekambi scored 21 goals in 66 appearances for Paris from 2010 to 2014 and at the end of the 2013/2014 season he joined Sochaux.

Real start back from a fairly long break right out on the road, while Villarreal are trying to do the same while also trying to avoid relegation the rest of this season. This is a big match for both clubs. A trip to Villarreal is never easy, but this is an opportunity for Real to continue their title hopes and get a win before they play again on Sunday.

It will be interesting to see how Real match up coming back to action and how they deal with Villarreal. Dont let their position in the standings fool you Villarreal are still a dangerous team to play, especially when Real have to make the trip. Another clear point to watch on Thursday is Casemiro in his first match return since injury.

This is a tricky one to call in many ways as both sides have more to offer than theyve shown so far this season. Their trip to the Middle East for the Club World Cup saw Gareth Bale return to form with a hat-trick and Marcos Llorente further strengthen his claim for a regular starting berth with some more assured displays in midfield. Overall though, Real look capable of edging it.

A freelance writer and sports analyst with almost five years of experience in the industry before joining SoccerNews, Juan Pablo Aravena is based in Chile and currently contributes to several publications and websites including SoccerNews, 12up, and Sports From The Basement, while also working as a fantasy beat writer for RotoWire, as a database editor for EA Sports, and as a football analyst for SmartOdds and InsideFutbol. His areas of focus are Serie A, Bundesliga, Premier League, LaLiga, and Ligue 1, but he has also written about MLS and South American football in the past.