With two matchdays completed, the LaLiga Santander table is beginning to take shape and four teams will put their 100 percent records on the line this weekend, with matches taking place across Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
Two of the biggest games of this round are being held in the city of Barcelona on Sunday night, with FC Barcelona vs Real Valladolid and then RCD Espanyol vs Real Madrid.
The very first fixture of Matchday 3 is also taking place in Catalonia, as Girona FC welcome RC Celta to the Estadi Montilivi on Friday evening.
It was there that the newly promoted side earned their first win of the season on Monday night, something RC Celta are still chasing. Contrastingly, Real Betis and CA Osasuna have each won their two fixtures so far, but they can’t both keep up their 100 percent records as they’ll be squaring off in the second of the Friday night fixtures.
Three LaLiga Santander duels will take place across Saturday evening, starting with Elche CF vs Real Sociedad. Since Los Franjiverdes were promoted back into the top tier in 2020, they’ve lost all four of their clashes with La Real, so will hope summer signings Álex Collado and Roger Martí can help them change that trend.
Later on Saturday, Rayo Vallecano have their first home fixture of the season when they face RCD Mallorca. They’ve already collected four points on the road and will now hope Vallecas can be a fortress once again, as it was at the start of 2021/22, when they took 25 home points from the first 27 of the campaign.
UD Almería, having come up this summer, will also hope to make their home ground, the Power Horse Stadium, a fortress, especially this Saturday night as they have an Andalusian derby at home to Sevilla FC.
There are three more games on Sunday’s slate of fixtures, the first of which is Getafe CF vs Villarreal CF. These are the teams currently bottom and top of the table, as Geta have zero points and an early season goal difference of minus five, while Unai Emery’s side have six points already and are five goals to the good.
Then, all eyes will be on the city of Barcelona later on Sunday night as the Catalan capital hosts two matches in a row, both of which could be crucial in the title fight. First, it’s FC Barcelona vs Real Valladolid at 19:30 CEST at the Spotify Camp Nou as Barça seek their first home victory of the campaign against Pacheta’s side, who frustrated Sevilla FC on their travels just last week. Robert Lewandowski has now scored his first two LaLiga Santander goals and will lead the line for the home side, seeking his first official strike in front of his new fanbase.
Then, once that match reaches its conclusion, RCD Espanyol vs Real Madrid will kick off at 22:00 CEST just five kilometres down the road. This was one of just four fixtures that Los Blancos lost on their way to the championship last term, so they know it could be a tricky contest.
The matchday continues into Monday with two more games, the first of which sees Cádiz CF host Athletic Club. This will be a first for Ernesto Valverde, who has coached 445 LaLiga Santander matches in total but who, quite incredibly, has never before faced Cádiz CF.
Matchday 3 then concludes with a blockbuster battle at Mestalla, with Gennaro Gattuso’s Valencia CF hosting Diego Simeone’s Atlético de Madrid. Their two meetings last season produced 11 goals in total and four goals after the 90-minute mark to completely change the destination of the points and it could be just as dramatic as these two historic clubs lay it all on the line once again.