Almeria vs Real Madrid

Real Madrid take a trip to the Estadio de los Juegos Mediterráneos to take on La Liga newcomers Almeria in their opening 2022/23 league fixture.

Newly-promoted Almeria clocked up an eye-catching nine-game unbeaten league run (W5, D4) at the tail-end of last season to win promotion as the Segunda Division champions. By contrast, the last time ‘Los Almeriensistas’ competed in La Liga, they went winless in five consecutive league outings (D1, L4), conceding two or more goals on each occasion. Interestingly, despite their relatively sparse La Liga experience in the 21st century, the hosts have lost their opening top-flight fixture only once across the last six campaigns (W2, D3). That’s likely to change here, as Rubi’s men have lost both previous home La Liga meetings with Real Madrid by an aggregate score of 1-9. A run of three clean sheets from their last four league outings at Juegos Mediterráneos gives them hope they could turn their fortunes around.

Defending La Liga and European champions Real Madrid picked up where they left off last term as they put a couple of unanswered goals past Eintracht Frankfurt in the 2022 UEFA Super Cup. Despite failing to land PSG’s Kylian Mbappe, ‘Los Blancos’ have brought in Antonio Rudiger and Aurelien Tchouameni to bolster their bid to win back-to-back La Liga titles for the first time since 2006/07 and 2007/08. Carlo Ancelotti’s men dethroned arch-rivals Atletico Madrid in a thumping fashion last season, leaving runners-up Barcelona 13 points in their wake. Odds-on favourites to kickstart their title defence on a high, ‘Los Merengues’ haven’t lost any of their last nine away La Liga clashes against Andalusian hosts (W8, D1), their best such run in the competition since 2012.

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