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Espanyol logo
La Liga | Gameweek 21
Feb 13, 2023 at 8pm UK
RCDE Stadium
Real Sociedad logo

2 - 3
Real Sociedad

Darder (74'), Olivan (87')
Gil (18'), Braithwaite (57'), Cabrera (80')
Cabrera (90+4')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Kubo (23'), Sorloth (51'), Cabrera (63' og.)
Fernandez (90+7')

Preview: Espanyol vs. Real Sociedad - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Monday's La Liga clash between Espanyol and Real Sociedad, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Real Sociedad will be bidding to bounce back from their surprise defeat to Real Valladolid when they continue their La Liga campaign away to Espanyol on Monday night.

The visitors, who are third in the table, suffered a 1-0 home loss to Real Valladolid last time out, while Espanyol will enter the contest off the back of a 1-1 draw with Osasuna.

Match preview

Espanyol coach Diego Martinez reacts on December 31, 2022© Reuters

Only Elche (one) have won fewer La Liga matches than Espanyol this season, with the Catalan outfit only managing to triumph in four of their 20 matches in 2022-23.

However, they have drawn a league-high nine times, suffering only seven defeats, with a total of 21 points leaving them in 16th position in the table, only one point outside of the relegation zone.

Espanyol finished 14th in La Liga last season after returning to the top tier, and they will be bidding to avoid dropping into the Segunda Division for the second time in three campaigns.

The White and Blues recorded a 1-0 victory over Real Betis on January 21 before losing 3-1 at Almeria in their final game of last month.

Last time out, Diego Martinez's side came from behind to secure a point against Osasuna, with Martin Braithwaite cancelling out an opener from Ante Budimir.

Real Sociedad coach Imanol Alguacil on January 25, 2023© Reuters

Real Sociedad, meanwhile, will enter this match off the back of a 1-0 loss at home to Real Valladolid, with Cyle Larin scoring the only goal of the contest in the 73rd minute.

The Basque outfit had been unbeaten in the league since the end of October before going down to Real Valladolid, so it will be interesting to see how the top-four hopefuls respond to the setback.

Imanol Alguacil's side have enjoyed an impressive campaign to date, picking up 39 points from 20 matches, which has left them in third position in the table, four points clear of fourth-placed Atletico Madrid and seven ahead of fifth-placed Rayo Vallecano in the battle for the top four.

Real Sociedad have been excellent on their travels this season, picking up 22 points from 10 matches, which is the third-best record in the division behind Barcelona (27) and Real Madrid (24).

The White and Blues have won their last two league games against Espanyol, but they suffered a 1-0 defeat when the two sides last locked horns at RCDE Stadium in November 2021.

Espanyol La Liga form:

Espanyol form (all competitions):

Real Sociedad La Liga form:

Real Sociedad form (all competitions):

Team News

Real Sociedad midfielder David Silva in action against Real Madrid in La Liga on September 20, 2020© Reuters

Espanyol will be without the services of Ronael Pierre-Gabriel, with the Frenchman suspended due to the red card that he picked up against Osasuna.

Meanwhile, Joselu, Keidi Bare and Adria Pedrosa will be missing for the home side through injury, and Cesar Montes is a doubt with the problem that forced him off in the first half last time out.

The squad will be boosted by the returns of Oscar Gil and Vinicius Souza, though, with the pair available after serving suspensions against Osasuna, and they are expected to return to the starting side here.

As for Real Sociedad, a lengthy injury list includes Aritz Elustondo, David Silva, Jon Pacheco, Mohamed Ali-Cho, Andoni Gorosabel, Mikel Merino, Ander Guevara, Alex Sola and Martin Merquelanz.

The visitors did not pick up any fresh problems against Real Valladolid last time out, but there are expected to be a couple of changes, with Brais Mendez and Mikel Oyarzabal set to return.

Oyarzabal is likely to feature alongside Takefusa Kubo and Alexander Sorloth in the final third of the field, with Robert Navarro expected to drop to the bench for Alguacil's side.

Espanyol possible starting lineup:
Fernandez; Gil, Gomez, Cabrera, Olivan; Vidal, Vinicius, Darder, Melamed; Puado, Braithwaite

Real Sociedad possible starting lineup:
Remiro; Barrenetxea, Zubeldia, Le Normand, Rico; Mendez, Zubimendi, Illarramendi; Oyarzabal, Sorloth, Kubo

SM words green background

We say: Espanyol 1-1 Real Sociedad

Real Sociedad will be determined to return to winning ways, but Espanyol have been the draw specialists in La Liga this season, and we are finding it difficult to separate them here. An away victory would not be a surprise, but Espanyol have enough quality to secure a share of the spoils.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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Real Sociedad's Martin Zubimendi pictured in December 2021
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