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Rayo Vallecano logo
La Liga | Gameweek 16
Dec 11, 2023 at 8pm UK
Estadio de Vallecas
Celta Vigo logo

Rayo Vallecano
0 - 0
Celta Vigo

Valentin (68'), Lopez (73'), Ciss (83')

Preview: Rayo Vallecano vs. Celta Vigo - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Monday's La Liga clash between Rayo Vallecano and Celta Vigo, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Celta Vigo's search for just their second La Liga victory of the 2023-24 campaign will continue on Monday evening when they travel to Rayo Vallecano.

The visitors have struggled this season, only picking up nine points from their opening 15 matches, which has left them in 18th spot in the table, while Rayo are 11th on 19 points.

Match preview

Rayo Vallecano's Unai Lopez celebrates scoring their first goal on November 25, 2023© Reuters

Rayo have won four, drawn seven and lost four of their 15 league matches this season to collect 19 points, which has left them in 11th position in the table, level on points with 10th-placed Valencia.

Los Franjirrojos have finished 12th and 11th in their last two campaigns back at this level, but they did claim eighth in 2012-13, so it would not be a surprise to see them secure a top-half position.

Francisco's side suffered a 4-0 defeat to Athletic Bilbao in the league last weekend, which made it five games without a victory in Spain's top flight, while they have only managed to win once in La Liga since the middle of September, so there has been a drop-off since the start of the season.

Rayo will enter this match off the back of a positive result, though, recording a 2-0 victory over Yeclano to progress to the third round of the Copa del Rey.

Los Franjirrojos have not actually beaten Celta in Spain's top flight since January 2019, but the points were shared in a goalless draw in the corresponding match during the 2022-23 campaign.

Celta Vigo coach Rafael Benitez before the match on October 21, 2023© Reuters

Celta, meanwhile, also triumphed in the Copa del Rey on Thursday, securing their spot in the third round of the competition courtesy of a 2-1 success over Sestao River.

The Sky Blues have drawn their last two in the league against Valencia and Cadiz, meanwhile, with a total of nine points from 15 matches leaving them in 18th position in the table.

Celta have won one, drawn six and lost eight of their games in Spain's top flight this season, but they have only been beaten in one of their last four, and there have been positive signs from Rafael Benitez's side in recent weeks, with this match potentially being used as a springboard.

The Vigo outfit have finished eighth, 11th and 13th in their last three league seasons, but they were 17th in two straight campaigns in 2018-19 and 2019-20, so it is not shocking to see them in the relegation zone.

There is still an awful lot of football to be played this season, and Celta, who have won two of their last three league games against Rayo, have a manager capable of dealing with high-pressure situations.

Rayo Vallecano La Liga form:

Rayo Vallecano form (all competitions):

Celta Vigo La Liga form:

Celta Vigo form (all competitions):

Team News

Rayo Vallecano's Oscar Valentin on August 28, 2023© Reuters

Rayo will again be missing Aridane Hernandez on Monday due to a foot problem, while Alfonso Espino is suspended following his yellow card against Athletic last time out in the league.

Head coach Francisco is set to make changes to the side that took to the field for the first whistle against Athletic, with Oscar Trejo and Jorge de Frutos both expected to come into the side.

Pep Chavarria could benefit from Espino's absence to feature at left-back, but Alvaro Garcia and Sergio Camello are both expected to retain their positions in the final third of the field.

As for Celta, Joseph Aidoo will miss the match due to a serious knee injury, but the visitors are otherwise in strong shape for Monday's clash.

Head coach Benitez could name the same side that took to the field for the first whistle of the league clash with Cadiz last time out, with Iago Aspas and Jorgen Strand Larsen featuring as the front two.

There will be changes from the side that took to the field in the Copa del Rey on Thursday, with Manu Sanchez, Oscar Mingueza, Renato Tapia and Luca de la Torre among those set to return.

Rayo Vallecano possible starting lineup:
Dimitrievski; Balliu, Mumin, Lejeune, Chavarria; Valentin, Ciss; De Frutos, Trejo, A Garcia; Camello

Celta Vigo possible starting lineup:
Guaita; Vazquez, Starfelt, Nunez, Sanchez; Mingueza, Tapia, De la Torre, Bamba; Larsen, Aspas

SM words green background

We say: Rayo Vallecano 1-1 Celta Vigo

There is not an awful lot between these two teams when it comes to quality, even if the league table paints a different picture at this stage of the season. Celta are drawing a low of games at the moment, and we are expecting the points to be shared in a tight match on Monday night.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting under 2.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 2.5:data

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Today's games header
Tables header RHS
1Athletic Bilbao00000000
2Atletico MadridAtletico00000000
3Celta Vigo00000000
9Las PalmasLas Palmas00000000
13Rayo Vallecano00000000
14Real BetisBetis00000000
15Real Madrid00000000
16Real Sociedad00000000
17Real ValladolidValladolid00000000

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