Artistic Differences: Can Real Sociedad Topple Getafe?

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Getafe Real Sociedad
SAN SEBASTIAN, SPAIN - JUNE 24: Martin Odegaard of Real Sociedad competes for the ball with Fran Beltran of RC Celta de Vigo during the Liga match between Real Sociedad and RC Celta de Vigo at Estadio Anoeta on June 24, 2020 in San Sebastian, Spain. (Photo by Pedro Salado/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)

With Sevilla dropping yet more points – this time against a heavily rotated Real Valladolid – Getafe and Real Sociedad have a real opportunity to close the gap on La Liga’s top four and keep their Champions League aspirations alive.

It’s a tale of two styles here, too. Getafe have been notorious for their physical, tough-to-beat style of play under Jose Bordalas. Meanwhile, Real Sociedad have delighted spectators with their creative, free-flowing playstyle.

Inspired by Imanol Alguacil, gifted technicians like Martin Odegaard and Mikel Oyarzabal have delivered a verve to the Basque side’s play this season.

Yet, despite their successes earlier in the campaign, both teams have struggled post-lockdown; both sides are winless, and have lost a sense of their respective identities: Getafe have looked leaky and mistake-prone, while Sociedad have lacked inspiration and attacking potency.

Artistic Differences: Can Real Sociedad Topple Getafe?

Lagging Behind

Wins for either side would keep their increasingly slimming top-four hopes alive. Strikers Willian Jose and Alexander Isak have had patchy form of late. Martin Odegaard is yet to display the same level of quality he showed prior to the restart. The Norwegian playmaker has been crucial to his side’s success this season; Alguacil will be desperate to see the starlet rediscover his creative touch and break down a well-organised Getafe backline.

Getafe are also yet to replicate their form from before the restart. Despite their last three games being against sides in the bottom five, the Madrid side have substituted their plucky resilience for underwhelming wastefulness; Bordalas’ side took 15 shots in their last game against Valladolid, with only one shot hitting the target. Performances from star defender Djene Dakonam have deteriorated.

Similarly, the attacking output of Jaime Mata has also dwindled, but Getafe fans will hope the Spaniard’s goal against Valladolid will spur him on to a return of form.

Team News

Sociedad are still without experienced midfielder Asier Illarramendi, while Diego Llorente will miss out through suspension. Robin Le Normand, who lost his starting berth to Aritz Elustondo last time out, could return in Llorente’s stead.

Manager Alguacil must also decide whether to opt for the more technical, creative Adnan Januzaj, or the industrious direct play of Portu, to play on the right-wing. Lanky Swede Alexander Isak could also return to the line-up, which would see Willian Jose drop to the bench.

After his yellow card against Valladolid, Getafe will be without the services of Djene Dakonam. This means that Chema Rodriguez could start alongside former Athletic Club defender Xabier Etxeita at centre-half.

Wide man Oghenekaro Etebo may also miss out through injury, meaning former Watford full-back Allan Nyom could retain his place on the right of the Getafe midfield. Either veteran striker Jorge Molina or the prolific Angel Rodriguez could replace Hugo Duro up front, supporting Jaime Mata.

Prediction

Given the form of both teams, a draw does neither of them any good. A win for either side would put Sevilla under intense pressure, and with seven games to go, anything is possible.

Both sides are missing their main defenders, and with the potency of both attacks, there should be a few goals in this one. However, given their slightly better form, Getafe must be favourites.

Getafe 2-1 Real Sociedad

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