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May 13, 2021 at 9pm UK
GranadaGranada
1-4
Real MadridReal Madrid
Molina (71')
Molina (41'), Brice Eteki (53'), Quina (72')
FT(HT: 0-2)
Modric (17'), Rodrygo (45+1'), Odriozola (75'), Benzema (76')
Militao (38'), Modric (49'), Nacho (63')

Preview: Granada vs. Real Madrid - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Granada vs. Real Madrid - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Thursday's La Liga clash between Granada and Real Madrid, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

With their La Liga title destiny now out of their own hands, Real Madrid will endeavour to keep their hopes of glory alive when they travel to Granada on Thursday night.

The hosts fell to a 2-1 defeat to Real Betis on Monday night, while Zinedine Zidane's crop lost ground in the title race with a 2-2 draw against fellow high-flyers Sevilla.


Match preview

A run of three defeats from their last four matches has left Granada's fleeting European hopes in tatters, and not even a historic 2-1 win on Barcelona's turf could inspire the former Europa League contenders to get the job done against Cadiz or Real Betis.

Diego Martinez's side quickly fell behind against Betis to Borja Iglesias's 39th-minute opener before Darwin Machis appeared to have rescued a point for his side, but Iglesias doubled his tally on the night in the 87th minute to all but kill off Granada's top-seven hopes.

The hosts now lie smack bang in the middle of the table in 10th place, and they need other results to go their way while they attempt to pull off a shock against Real Madrid this week, but seventh-placed Villarreal will be out of sight if they can prevail against Real Valladolid a few hours before Granada are in action.

Martinez's side can look ahead to two winnable fixtures against Alaves and Getafe before the season concludes, and while it may be too little too late for their European hopes by that point, another top-half finish would certainly represent a successful season.

Granada prepare to do battle with Real Madrid having failed to keep a clean sheet in any of their last eight matches, but they have only lost three of their last 12 fixtures on home soil before Zidane's title-chasers seek to keep the defence of their crown alive.

With the La Liga title now representing Real Madrid's only opportunity for silverware this season, Zidane's side continue to drop points at the worst possible time, but they will be grateful that their title rivals have been far from perfect in recent weeks too.

A goalless stalemate between Barcelona and Atletico Madrid presented Zidane's men with a prime opportunity to leapfrog their city rivals at the top of the standings when they welcomed Sevilla to the capital, but they had to come from behind twice just to rescue a point as substitutes Marco Asensio and Eden Hazard cancelled out strikes from Fernando and Ivan Rakitic.

A two-point gap now separates Real from leaders Atletico at the top of the standings - while Barcelona are only behind Los Blancos on head-to-head points - and Zidane's men could drop down to third before Thursday should their title rivals prevail earlier in the week.

At a first glance, two wins from their last eight matches across all competitions may be a serious cause for concern, but Zidane's side have strung together a 15-game unbeaten run in La Liga and have not lost away from home domestically since November - winning seven and drawing five on the road since defeat at Valencia in 2020.

Real Madrid strolled to a 2-0 win over Granada just before Christmas, and that result represented their 11th straight success over Martinez's men, who last triumphed over the capital side in 2013.

Granada La Liga form:
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • L

Granada form (all competitions):
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • L

Real Madrid La Liga form:
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • D

Real Madrid form (all competitions):
  • W
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • D

Team News

Granada attacker Roberto Soldado will serve the second of a three-game ban this week following his sending off against Cadiz, while Angel Montoro had to leave the field after 13 minutes on Monday due to a suspected hamstring issue.

Yangel Herrera and Domingos Duarte were also casualties in Monday's game with quadriceps and knee injuries respectively, and the two players - alongside Montoro - join Kenedy, Jesus Vallejo and Carlos Neva in the treatment room.

Martinez will therefore be forced to make several alterations for this game, with the likes of Nehuen Perez, Yan Eteki and Fede Vico expected to replace each member of the newly-injured trio.

Real Madrid's defensive concerns are well-documented as Dani Carvajal, Lucas Vazquez and Ferland Mendy remain out, while their full-back options may also be depleted further as Marcelo and Alvaro Odriozola are not thought to be at 100%, despite taking part in team training on Wednesday.

Federico Valverde and the young Miguel Gutierrez may therefore be forced to deputise in defence, while Eder Militao and Nacho ought to continue as a centre-back pairing as Raphael Varane and Sergio Ramos continue their recoveries.

Asensio and Hazard can surely look forward to starting berths following their pivotal goals against Sevilla, and it would not be a surprise to see Luka Modric rested as Isco comes in.

Granada possible starting lineup:
Escandell; Foulquier, Perez, Sanchez, Quini; Eteki, Gonalons; Puertas, Vico, Machis; Suarez

Real Madrid possible starting lineup:
Courtois; Valverde, Militao, Nacho, Gutierrez; Casemiro, Kroos, Isco; Asensio, Benzema, Hazard


We say: Granada 1-3 Real Madrid

A ravaged Blancos backline should see Granada play without fear against Zidane's title-chasers, as the hosts - who are bedevilled by injuries themselves - realistically have very little to play for in their final three games.

However, Madrid's prowess away from home has been evident throughout the campaign, and anything other than a win here will leave their title defence in tatters, so we can only back the visitors to march to a convincing three points.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data



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La Liga Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CAtletico MadridAtletico38268467254286
2Real Madrid38259467283984
3Barcelona38247785384779
4Sevilla38245953332077
5Real Sociedad3817111059382162
6Real Betis381710115050061
7Villarreal3815131060441658
8Celta Vigo381411135557-253
9Granada38137184765-1846
10Athletic Bilbao381113144642446
11Osasuna381111163748-1144
12CadizCadiz381111163658-2244
13Valencia381013155053-343
14Levante38914154657-1141
15Getafe38911182843-1538
16AlavesAlaves38911183657-2138
17ElcheElche38812183455-2136
RHuesca38713183453-1934
RReal Valladolid38516173457-2331
REibarEibar38612202952-2330
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