Could this be the season La Liga loses a big name to relegation?
Before a ball was kicked this season, not many thought Alaves and Leganes had much chance of achieving anything other than immediate relegation back to the Segunda Division.
But their impressive starts to the 2016-17 campaign have meant that there are two gaps in the La Liga relegation zone which need filling, so could this be the year a big team finally falls?
Valencia experienced their worst league finish in three decades last campaign, and have gradually drifted out of the running for the title in recent years.
But could this be the year the six-time La Liga winners finally fall into the second tier of Spanish football?
Their form certainly suggests that’s a realistic possibility.
After losing their opening four games of the season, Los Che now have just six points to their name, with their two wins coming against newly-promoted sides, and Cesare Prandelli’s men find themselves in 18th place as a result.
One of the major factors contributing to Valencia’s downfall is recent years is the club’s stability, or lack of, with Prandelli being the ninth man to lead a Valencia side out of the tunnel since Unai Emery’s departure in 2012.
They spent much of last season in the bottom half of the table, but could this be the year we see Valencia finally fall?
Though they haven’t achieved much success in terms of silverware in recent years, Espanyol are one of the more established sides in La Liga, with this being their 22nd successive campaign in the top-flight.
But that doesn’t mean their position is safe for another year, as they are currently sitting just above Valencia in 17th place, with just one win to their name so far this season.
Right now Espanyol are conceding two goals a game on average, a statistic which will surely be worrying boss Quique Sanchez Flores, who is yet to experience a home victory with the Blanquiazules.
They still have to travel to Atletico Madrid and Barcelona between now and Christmas, so they’ll be hoping to get their act together sooner rather than later if they’re to secure their La Liga status for yet another season.
Valencia are away at Sporting Gijon this weekend, where surprisingly they’re 23/20 favourites to grab all three points, while Espanyol are in action against high-flying Las Palmas, with Flores’ men 12/5 outsiders to record just their second victory of the season.
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All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing