Celta Vigo vs. Malaga / La Liga – This is a duel between two teams that are in the lower part of the table, or gravitating to the center and so far they have won the same number of points (21), which keeps them at a safe distance from the relegation zone, however, neither one nor the other were expected to be in a fight for survival, rather than fighting for Europa League, which Celta is playing very successfully this season and they won the knockout phase. Malaga has no European commitments, while they also as of recent have no obligations in the Cup, because they were eliminated from a team which plays in the second division. But Celta played well in that competition and they are on the verge of placement in the quarterfinals. Celta is in a somewhat worse series of three games without a win and two defeats in a championship, while Malaga has a total of five matches without a win. In the last two seasons, both teams have celebrated at home in their mutual duels, without any goals received. Begins: 08.01.2017. – 18:30 CET
This is a strange season for Celta which played very well in Europa League and they deservedly qualified for the sixteenth finals, while a team from Vigo also plays well in the Copa del Rey, while they have problems in the championship and there is a lot of oscillation, which is why we are at the bottom part of the table. It is difficult to predict how Celta will look at each new game, because they were in a very aggressive mood against Betis at home and in the end they pulled out a draw 3-3, for which was followed by a European victory against Panathinaikos at home with 2-0. Therefore, it is certainly not expected that they would at home lose to Sevilla with 3-0.
In the last round before the break, they played as guests against Athletic and in an incomprehensible way spilled the lead of 1-0 and lost with 2-1. In the last eight minutes they received two goals, of which the second one deep in the injury time. They also lost their center-back Roncaglia, who got suspended and is now not eligible to play. Striker Orellana is still injured. They celebrated in an impressive way a few days ago as guests in the Cup over Valencia with 4-1 and in relation to that composition, only Fontas will now jump instead of Roncaglia.
Probable lineups Celta Vigo: Ruben – Hugo Mallo, Cabral, Fontas, Jonny Castro – Diaz, Radoja – Wass, Hernandez, Bongonda – Iago Aspas
Malaga was eliminated from the Cup after two defeats by a team from the second division Cordoba, which they certainly should not have allowed themselves. However, maybe even bigger problem is that they have a negative series in the championship and that they have not mastered anyone in the last three rounds. A draw away with Valencia is a good achievement, particularly because they reached the final 2-2 in injury time, but after that, they played only 1-1 at home against weak Granada. They were especially bad away against Sevilla, where they have already lost with 4-0.
In the second part, they have preserved their network, but then in the Cup against Cordoba received four goals and it is clear that their defence creaks. Weligton is injured and suspended, but they have in the meantime engaged another striker, the young Penaranda. They are also having problems with injuries and therefore striker Charles is absent for a while, as well as Camacho, Juankara, which are slowly recovering and will soon be able to play, especially Juankar who might be in the team already now against Celta.
Probable lineups Malaga: Boyko – Rosales, D.Llorente, Villanueva, M.Torres – Fornals, Juankar – Juanpi, Duda, Chori Castro – S.Ramirez
Celta Vigo vs. Malaga PICK
Celta is playing changeable, but somehow it seems that the time has come for a good performance in the championship. Malaga is the right opponent, because they are not in good shape and they still have not defeated anyone as guests. Therefore, it seems quite certain that in accordance with the tradition, they will again leave from Vigo with a defeat.
Pick: Celta Vigo wins
Odds: 1.85 at bet365 (down to 1.75 can be played)