Getafe v Barcelona – Coliseum Alfonso Pérez at 15:00 GMT +1
Getafe upset the odds to almost pinch a Champions League qualification place last term and many are surprised to see the Madrid minnows enter the 2019/20 campaign with their squad largely intact. Los Azulones will therefore be expected to offer their standard competitive service in Spain.
Workaholic head coach Jose Bordalas has made Getafe one of the most streetwise sides in Europe and Los Azulones will be following the same path to profit. They may not win many prizes for aesthetics, but they get through the miles and rarely give their opponents a moment’s rest through sheer ferocity.
Remarkably, Bordalas’ boys have been beaten just 10 times since the beginning of last season with Saturday afternoon’s visitors Barcelona joining Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid in accounting for six of those defeats. Five of those 10 reverses have arrived by a two-goal margin, although Getafe remain a wonderfully resilient outfit and well capable of keeping the score down here.
Barcelona are vulnerable
The hosts will send an air of vulnerability surrounding Barcelona following their dreadfully poor start to the La Liga campaign, particularly on the road. The Catalans have barely made their mark in embarrassing defeats at Granada and Athletic Bilbao, and were on the ropes during a 2-2 draw at Osasuna.
The Blaugrana have seen Lionel Messi pick up another injury in their unimpressive midweek home win over Villarreal and Ernesto Valverde’s position as the club’s head coach is now under serious scrutiny. With a Champions League clash to come against Inter, a trip to Getafe is hardly for the feint-hearted.
Despite Barcelona’s dominance of Spain’s top-flight over the past 12 months, the visitors have only tabled victory by a margin of two goals or more in six of 22 games as La Liga guests, again suggesting they might struggle to make major inroads against the wonderfully organised underdogs on Saturday.
The betting angle
Getafe have been beaten by two goals or more just twice since the start of last season and I expect Los Azulones to put up stern resistance against the underperforming Catalans in the capital. Backing the hosts with a +1 goal start at 1.73 sees our stake returned should Barcelona bag victory by a solitary strike.
Asian Handicap Betting Recommendation: Getafe +1.00 at 1.730
Preview by: @MarkOHaire.