Zinedine Zidane‘s men lost their last encounter against Sevilla 3-2 and will look to bounce back and get the three points.
Here we take a lot at key stats and facts ahead of the game at Santiago Bernabeu.
– Celta are winless in their last seven league games against Real Madrid (D1 L6), conceding 3.5 goals per game (25 in total).
– Celta de Vigo have scored more goals against Real Madrid (136) than versus any other side in La Liga history.
– The Galician side have lost their last four visits to teams from Madrid in La Liga, failing to score in the last three.
– Celta have not won any of their last five La Liga games (D3 L2), their longest run without a win with Unzue as manager.
– Real Madrid are unbeaten in their last eight La Liga home games (W6 D2), scoring 3.6 goals on average, after losing their previous two.
– Celta have won more points from goals scored in the last 15 minutes of games than any other La Liga side this season (12).
– No player has scored more headed goals than Maxi Gomez in Europe’s top five leagues this season (9, level with Stuani).
– The Uruguayan striker has had a hand in three of Celta’s last five goals in La Liga (two goals, one assist).
– Toni Kroos has scored three goals against Celta in La Liga, more than he has against any other side in the competition.
– Gareth Bale has been directly involved in three of Real Madrid’s last six goals at Santiago Bernabeu in La Liga (two goals, one assist).
Statistics provided by Opta
Zidane’s side take on Celta Vigo in their final home game of the campaign on Saturday, with an away tie against Villarreal then followed by the Champions League final against Liverpool.
“It’s the last game of the season at our stadium and we want to give our fans one last treat by winning the match,” Zidane said in quotes reported on the club’s official website.
“They deserve it and that’s what we are going to try to do tomorrow. We will give everything to make those who come to watch the last home game leave happy.
“Our motivation isn’t going to change just because we’re not going to win La Liga, but playing is the best way to prepare, playing well at a high level of intensity. There’s nothing that can replicate a game.
“We’ll play the two remaining La Liga games in the best possible way. We’ll work on things, but with the ball. The physical side of things has already been worked on well during the season.”
The away side’s hopes of securing a Europa League spot are shot but the hosts are still in a position to chase down neighbours Atletico Madrid for second place.
Meanwhile, there are also other points of significance that surround this encounter.
LACK OF DEPTH
Having fallen well behind Barcelona in La Liga rather quickly this season, Zinedine Zidane understandably rotated his squad in the league as he prioritised winning the Champions League for a third successive time.
Given that they have progressed to the final of the prestigious European competition, it’s proved to be the right move. A bi-product of that decision though has been the exposure of Madrid’s lack of strength in depth.
The Spanish giants do not boast the kind of quality in reserve that many would expect them to and that was brought to light again in a 3-2 defeat to Sevilla on Wednesday.
Poor recruitment in recent years and the lack of it last summer has put too much pressure on the regulars who have struggled to cope with the demands of the league and Champions League, with the club eventually resigned to their fate in the former.
The likes of Mateo Kovacic, Dani Ceballos, Jesus Vallejo and Theo Hernandez particularly disappointed against Sevilla. The fringe players only have two league games to prove their worth, starting with Celta Vigo. It’s hard to see Madrid resist making significant improvements to their side again this summer.
Gareth Bale missed the clash with Sevilla through suspension but should start against Celta Vigo. Not only will he be playing for his place in the starting XI that faces Liverpool in Kiev, but also for his future at the club.
Despite signing a new deal in 2016 that runs until 2022, the Welshman may – and perhaps should – consider leaving the Bernabeu if he’s no longer playing a starring role. Bale’s lack of involvement in Madrid’s recent Champions League excursions is indicative of his plummeting stock in the Spanish capital.
However, with Cristiano Ronaldo’s availability for the European final still uncertain, he may have to play a key role for Los Blancos. While the Portuguese was still on the pitch in the Clasico, Bale found himself doing a lot more defensive work.
In the second half though, with Ronaldo taken off, Bale’s influence against Barcelona surged and he helped secure a point with a sublime equaliser.
STRUGGLING FOR FORM
Something Celta Vigo and Madrid both have in common is their rather poor run of form in accordance with their respective standards. The year 2018 has so far not been kind to the visitors who have struggled for points. In fact, Juan Carlos Unzue’s side have won just one of their last nine league outings.
Madrid on the other hand are now winless in their last three fixtures in all competitions. However, they have maintained a fairly impressive run at home in the new year. They have lost just once in the league since the turn of the year – a 1-0 defeat to Villarreal in January.
Playing their final game at the Bernabeu this season, Zidane will be keen to see his side sign off with a victory.