La Liga GW1 Review

Using expected goals (xG), Infogol’s Analyst takes a look at the opening weekend’s action, assessing performances and not just results to paint a clearer picture of the week’s matches, including selecting a Team to Back.



Actual vs Expected Goal (xG) totals La Liga GW1 


Eibar got their campaign off to the best possible start with a 1-0 win away at Malaga, with former Malaga striker Charles getting the winner for his new club. This was the third most ‘unfair’ result of the weekend, as both teams generated a similar amount of chances and xG. A draw would have been a fair result, but Eibar go back to the Basque country with the three points.


Surprisingly, the second most ‘unfair’ result of the weekend was in Catalonia, as Girona drew 2-2 with Atletico Madrid. The home team were unfortunate not to take all three points after an impressive La Liga debut in which they caused last season’s best defence a lot of problems. The home team went 2-0 up through goals from Cristhian Stuani, before Antoine Griezmann saw red. Atleti scored two late goals to salvage a draw, but that was a harsh result on the home team who limited the visitors to just low-probability efforts. Girona definitely caught the eye in the opening weekend.


The most ‘unfair’ result of the opening game week in La Liga was Real Madrid’s 3-0 win over Deportivo, though the figures were increased due to Depor’s late penalty. Non-penalty xG would have this as a fair result, with Real Madrid generating chances at will and conceding few, but it was a decent display from Depor, who should really have got on the scoresheet before the penalty miss. Florin Andone was the main threat, and he was on the end of 70% of Deportivo’s xG (non-penalty). 


Real just keep on winning 


Leganes’ 1-0 win over Alaves was also seen as a slightly unfair result, but other than a missed penalty, Alaves didn’t threaten much. Getafe held Bilbao to a creditable goalless draw at San Mames, while a weaker-looking Barcelona team did enough to get past Real Betis (2-0) at the Nou Camp. Sevilla and Espanyol both missed a lot of chances in their 1-1 draw, while the same can’t be said for Celta Vigo and Real Sociedad, who were involved in a five goal-thriller won by the away side Sociedad. 


Levante’s 1-0 win over Villarreal and Valencia’s 1-0 home win over Las Palmas were the ‘fairest’ results of the weekend. Both were dominant throughout, conceding very few scoring opportunities.


GW2 Team to Back Eibar

Eibar showed promising signs in their opening day victory over Malaga, creating high-quality chances rather than a lot of low-quality ones. They face Bilbao in GW2 who looked rather toothless in their opener against Getafe, and at a price of 15/8 look good value to edge this Basque derby.


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