Week 20 of La Liga caps off with an intriguing matchup between Espanyol and Elche. A win by either club would propel the former to ninth and the latter out of the relegation zone and onto 16th place.
RCDE won its first two matches after taking a well-deserved holiday break, beating Valencia to cap 2021 as well as advancing to the round of 16 of the Copa del Rey. Their last home match was a 4-3 goalfest victory over Levante.
Los Franjiverdes are also undefeated for the year, starting 2022 with a scoreless draw against Granada and followed by a 2-1 conquest of Almería in the round of 32 of the Copa del Rey. Their last La Liga away match was a 2-3 loss to Barcelona.
The Periquitos are unbeaten in their last seven La Liga assignments at RCDE Stadium. Six of their nine league games at home end up over 1.5 goals. By themselves, they average 1.56 goals in home La Liga games.
Elche have not won any of their last eight league matches away after winning their previous three. In ten La Liga fixtures on the road this season, 60% ended up over 1.5 goals, although they average less than a single goal in away contests.
Recent form (last five matches)
defeated Ponferradina, 3-1 in penalties (1-1 at end of regulation)
defeated Valencia, 2-1
lost to Celta Vigo, 1-3
defeated Cristo Atlético, 2-1
defeated Levante, 4-3
defeated Almería, 2-1
drew with Granada, 0-0
lost to Barcelona, 2-3
defeated Unionistas, 1-0
lost to Valencia, 1-2
Curiously, Espanyol have only won against Elche once in their last seven La Liga meetings after winning the previous three. Six of these seven ended up as draws. Despite that odd trend, Espanyol have won 12 in their last 19 league encounters versus Elche at home.
Elche are the clear underdogs in this matchup, but that does not mean they would not put up a fight. If you are the type that wants to live on the edge, you might want to consider putting some money on the visitors, or a draw result even.
Looking at the two clubs’ recent scorelines, it is safe to say that they will end up with over 1.5 goals. Going for over 2.5 goals is quite a risky proposition considering either side tends to shoot blanks in occasion.
Over 1.5 goals