real madrid
Cristiano Ronaldo [second from right] is expected to produce a good showing for Real Madrid today in the absence of Bale and BenzemaReuters

This will be a match to watch out for. Celta Vigo and Real Madrid, both unbeaten in the La Liga this season go at loggerheads today at the Balaidos in their ninth league game of the season.

The home side are currently second in the Spanish league with five wins and three draws from their eight games so far, and Spanish heavyweights Real Madrid also have the same amount of wins and draws from the same number of games.

The only thing that makes Real the league leaders is the massive goal difference.

Celta might look as just another ordinary team on-paper compared to the powerhouse Real Madrid, but the home side has already bagged a massive 4-1 home win this season against Spanish giants Barcelona. 

And that gives both the team and the fans plenty of reasons to be optimistic.

"It's great to know that our fans are optimistic," Celta goalkeeper Sergio Alvarez said. "It shows that we are doing things the right way. Hopefully they will leave the stadium celebrating another big victory, which will be very important for us.

"We realize that it's going to be a very difficult game [against Real]," Alvarez added. "We will be playing against one of the best teams in the world.

"We will need to be focused from the start. We know the importance of a victory like this in front of our fans."

The most instrumental man for them this season so far has been Spanish forward Manuel "Nolito" Agudo, who has six goals and three assisits in the Spanish league for Celta already this season. And Real will have their task cut out today to stop him from increasing his goal tally.

"We know it's going to be a tough game. They [Celta] are still unbeaten," Real Madrid manager Rafa Benitez said. "They play a high-tempo game, have put in some great performances and strung together some good results.

"What's the key to beating them? If we have to attack, then we'll attack and if we have to defend, we'll defend. If we have to counter-attack, we'll do that too," the former Liverpool coach added.

Real come into this game at the backdrop of a goalless draw against Paris St-Germain in an UEFA Champions League group game in the midweek.

Team news

Celta Vigo - Nolito will be starting as an attacker upfront, while Dejan Drazic and Andreu Fontas look set to play a part in the game today, after recovering from their injuries.

Real Madrid - Benitez will have a tough time with several of their stars players -- including Karim Benzema, Gareth Bale, James Rodriguez, and Pepe, not fit enough to participate in the game. However, Alvaro Arbeloa and Mateo Kovacic could be expected to turn up in the game after recovering from their injuries.

Expected starting XI

Celta Vigo - Alvarez; Mallo, Jonny, Gomez, Cabral; Hernandez, Wass, Fernandez; Aspas, Nolito, Orellana.

Real Madrid - Navas; Varane, Nacho, Marcelo, Danilo; Kroos, Casemiro, Kovacic; Ronaldo, Isco; Jese.

Where to watch live

Celta Vigo vs Real Madrid is scheduled to kick-off at 3 pm BST (7:30 pm IST, 10 am EST, 2 pm GMT).

In India, viewers can catch the game on Sony Six HD and Sony Kix. Online streaming will be available on LIV Sports.

In the US, viewers can catch the game on beIN Sports. Online streaming will be available on beIN Sports Connect, Fubo TV and beIN Sports en Espanol.

In Spain, viewers can catch the game on Canal+ Liga/HD and Abono Futbol. Online streaming will be available on Movistar TV.

There will be no broadcast of the game in the UK, but the international audience can check the live scores from the game on Bet365.


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