La Liga round two kicks off Friday
Posted on Aug 28 2014 | IANS
Madrid, Aug 28 : The second round of matches in the Spanish BBVA Primera Liga kicks off Friday night to start a weekend with a lot of questions to be answered.
An expensively assembled Valencia are at home to Malaga, while Getafe, perhaps one of the favourites for relegation, entertain Almeria, who kicked off their campaign with a draw at home to Espanyol a week ago, reports Xinhua.
Saturday sees Athletic Club Bilbao, fresh from their qualification for the group stage of the Champions League, entertain a Levante that was comprehensively dismantled by Villarreal on the opening day.
Tiredness could be a factor for Athletic and many fans will wonder why the league decided against allowing the club to play Sunday.
Saturday also sees romance as little Eibar, who won everyone's hearts with their debut win at home to Real Sociedad visit the reigning league champions, Atletico Madrid.
Atletico looked flat in their opening game of the season, only managing a draw away to Rayo Vallecano, and coach Diego Simeone will watch the game from the stands as he begins his eight game suspension for his sending off in the Spanish Supercup.
Cordoba performed bravely in their opening day defeat to Real Madrid on the opening day and coach 'Chapi' Ferrer will look for a repeat as they make their home debut against a Celta Vigo who kicked off the season with a win, while there is also a match for night owls as Espanyol and Sevilla face off in a late night match.
Sunday sees the 'big two' of FC Barcelona and Real Madrid in action. Barca have a difficult trip down the coast to face Villarreal in what will be a real test of just where Luis Enrique's side is at the moment.
Barca won comfortably against Elche on the opening day and should have Gerard Pique and Neymar back after injury and suspension, but Villarreal have so far given the impression of a slick, well-organised team and anything below their best could see Lionel Messi and company fail to take all three points.
Real Sociedad lost to Eibar, the team with the lowest budget on the opening day of the season and now have to face Real Madrid, the side with the biggest budget.
Things are not going exactly as they should in the Madrid camp, with their defeat in the Spanish Supercup and a sluggish performance in their league debut.
There is also the feeling that all is not well in the Madrid camp as Xabi Alonso has asked to move to Bayern Munich and Angel Di Maria hit out at the club following his transfer to Manchester United.
Carlo Ancelotti needs a convincing display to start dispelling doubts over his side continuing over the international break.
The round of matches ends with Deportivo la Coruna at home to a lively Rayo Vallecano in a game that should tell us the ambitions of both teams for the campaign, while the late kickoff condemns Elche and Granada to burn the midnight oil.