Sunday La Liga Odds, Picks, Prediction: Back Mighty Real Madrid in Spanish Matchup (August 22)
David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images. Pictured: Eder Militao.
- Levante host Spanish giant Real Madrid on Sunday in La Liga action.
- Los Blancos have a new-look defense, but are favored to win the Spanish title with Lionel Messi now with PSG.
- BJ Cunningham breaks down the matchup and delivers his pick below.
Levante vs. Real Madrid Odds
|Real Madrid Odds||-160|
|Over/Under||2.5 (-155 / +125)|
|Day | Time||4 p.m. ET|
|How To Watch||ESPN+|
|Odds updated Sunday afternoon via DraftKings.|
Real Madrid look to make it two wins a row on the road to start their La Liga campaign when they travel to take on Levante.
Levante was second away from securing three points on opening weekend, until Cadiz leveled the match in the 97th minute. Levante have consistently been a bottom-half side, and this season will be no different. They did pull off a huge upset last season, beating Real Madrid on the road 2-1, so we’ll see if that history plays a part in Sunday’s match.
Real Madrid started their La Liga campaign off with a resounding 4-1 on the road against Alaves. Now that Lionel Messi has left Barcelona, Real Madrid is the overwhelming favorite to take home the La Liga title. However, if they are going to lift the trophy once again, they need to take all three points in winnable matches like this one on Sunday.
Levante Set for Relegation Scrap?
Levante is likely going to be battling relegation once again after a dismal 2020-21 campaign that saw them average only 1.08 xG per match, while also allowing 1.45 xG per contest.
Per fbref.com, their defense allowed the fourth-most shot-creating actions, the third-most touches in their own penalty area and fourth-most carries into the 18-yard area. Real Madrid’s prolific offense should be able to live in their final third all match long.
Levante was one of the worst teams over the final third of the season, going 1-3-7 over their final 11 matches. Considering they’re in bad form coming into the season, I don’t give them much hope against the La Liga title favorites.
New-Look Los Blancos Starting Strong
Real Madrid got their campaign off to a fantastic start, cruising to a 4-1 road win over Alaves. The question mark surrounding the club entering the season is in their new center-back pairing of Éder Militão and Nacho Fernandez after long time duo of Sergio Ramos and Raphaël Varane left the club this summer.
However, Ramos and Varane both missed substantial time during last season’s campaign and combined for only 46 La Liga appearances. However, Militão and Fernandez have a lot of experience playing together and there shouldn’t be a major drop off for a club that only allowed 1.02 xG per match last season.
Real Madrid was also one of the best teams on the road in Spain a season ago, going 12-6-1 with a +12.85 xGDiff. Needless to say, they should have no issues with a bottom-of-the-table side like Levante that is going to sit back in a very defensive 4-4-2 formation.
Betting Analysis & Pick
I think Real Madrid is undervalued on the road in this spot. Levante is going to be fighting against relegation all season long and their poor form coming into the season is very concerning.
I have Real Madrid projected at -206 odds, so I think there’s value on them at the current price of -155 and would play it up to -176 odds.
Pick: Real Madrid ML (-155 | play to -176)
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