Preview: Four things to look out for on Spain's matchday 7

Source: Xinhua| 2017-09-30 00:14:47|Editor: yan
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MADRID, Sept. 29 (Xinhua) -- The coming weekend sees the last round of games before the Spanish Liga Santander stops for a weekend of international matches, here are four things to look out for in match day 7.

1. A return to home comforts for Real Madrid?

Real Madrid return to the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium after two draws and a defeat from their last their home games, but on the back of an impressive away win away to Borussia Dortmund. Zinedine Zidane's side have also won their last 12 league matches away from home, so could it be the demands of their fans in the Bernabeu place extra pressure on the side as the first errors by players such as Gareth Bale are pounced on an criticized from the stands?

Espanyol have habitually been easy victims for Real Madrid, but this season Quique Sanchez Flores' side are improving after a slow start and look solid in defense: could they see nerves return to the Bernabeu once again?

2. Barca to make it 7 wins from 7 games?

FC Barcelona's last game before the break sees them entertain Las Palmas, who have Pako Ayestaran in the dugout for the first time after Manolo Marquez resigned as coach in the wake of their defeat to Leganes. Barca take on Las Palmas in the wake of pragmatic if unspectacular wins away to Girona and Sporting Lisbon and it seems that Ernesto Valverde is trying to replace the spark he is missing without the injured Ousmane Dembele and Gerard Deulofeu. So far his idea of placing an extra player in midfield has made them tougher at the back, but up front it is still down to Messi and it will also be interesting to see if sides now follow Girona's lead of trying to man-mark him for the 90 minutes to limit his influence on the pitch.

3. Valencia to continue climb up the table?

Marcelino Garcia has worked nothing short of a miracle during his short time at Valencia taking a club that was low on confidence and unity and building them into a solid unit with real attacking flair.

Wins against Malaga and away to Real Sociedad have got the fans in Mestalla bouncing as players such as Carles Solar, Simone Zaza, Dani Parejo and Rodrigo Moreno are producing their best football for the club and they will expect another win on Sunday when they face an Athletic Club Bilbao out of form, low on confidence and without the injured Iker Muniain, who has been their best player this season. Another win will confirm Valencia's top-four spot and their European ambitions.

4. How will the new boys fare?

Three coaches will make their Liga Santander debuts this weekend with Javier Calleja at Villarreal, Gianni Di Biasi at Alaves and Paco Ayestaran at Las Palmas. Ayestaran has a difficult job as his side travel to face FC Barcelona, while Calleja made his debut on Thursday with a 0-0 Europa League draw away to Maccabi Tel Aviv and will hope for better when they entertain Eibar, who are struggling for form themselves, on Sunday afternoon.

Di Biasi meanwhile takes his side, who are without a point after six games, to Levante, who are smarting from a 4-0 defeat to Betis at the weekend. None of these look to be easy games, so it remains to be seen whether the change of coach will being positive results to the three clubs.