Well the squad list hasn't been announced yet but I'll go on and write the preview anyway. As far as I'm aware we have no fresh injury concerns following the midweek defeat to Salzburg. Ibagaza is probably still going to be out. We rested several players for that game and they should be back in the fray on Sunday.
Racing come into this game off the back of wins over fellow strugglers Xerez and Espanyol. They are having a bit of an injury crisis and unfortunately for them they won't have the very talented 18 year old Sergio Canales lining up for them. He played a big part in their win over Espanyol watch. I'm a little disappointed too as I was looking forward to seeing the reason behind their recent resurgence. Munitis and Tchite will form the main attacking threat in his absence, Oscar Serrano's pace out wide could also cause a few problems. We should be well able to shut them out though.
I expect Valverde to go 4-4-2 at home, as to who will partner Rossi I really can't say. I've no idea which he will choose. Cani and Santi should make up the wings and I hope to see the Senna/Bruno midfield partnership renewed. Marcano should retain his place in defense with Venta, Godin and Capdevila. Lopez of course will be in nets. Xavi Oliva did himself no favors with the goal he conceded against Salzburg but that's somewhat to be expected of someone who doesn't get a lot of first team football.
I think we need to settle on a so called 'best eleven'. Stability is important and I think that would bring us on over the next few weeks. Both Marcano and Bruno have chances to secure places in the team and both have been doing well lately. Personally I like Marcano, tough tackling and strong in the air. He just has small lapses in concentration sometimes which cause problems but if these can be ironed out then he can become a to defender. He was also a solid left back against Salzburg, made several decent incursions forward.
All in all this is a game we should be winning and I would be confident of continuing our rise up the table. I continue to have total faith in Valverde and what he's trying to do at the club. There are still a few teething problems but I am confident that he is the man to take us forward. I'll add the squad on when it comes out. Check back tomorrow for the match thread!!
Edit - Squad : No Ibagaza and Gonzalo, Pereira and Fuentes not called and no Kiko either, maybe he picked up a knock midweek.
- Porters: Diego López i Xavi Oliva.
- Defenses: Ángel, Javi Venta, Godín, Marcano i Capdevila.
- Migcampistes: Eguren, Senna, Bruno, Pires, Cani, Santi Cazorla, Escudero i David Fuster.
- Davanters: Nilmar, Llorente i Rossi.