Ribaudo, Nicolas Melamed
Rayo Vallecano have won their last three meetings with Espanyol, including a 3-2 Segunda División victory in Catalonia last season. However, Rayo are winless in 13 La Liga games, half way to Levante’s top-flight record set earlier this season.
Two newly-promoted clubs, both on course for safety, go head-to-head in Cornellà de Llobregat.
RCD Espanyol came up as Segunda División champions, following their shock relegation in 2020, and have been comfortably mid-table all season.
On Sunday, Vicente Moreno’s side looked like earning an impressive point away to Atlético Madrid when Raúl de Tomás equalised in the capital.
However, deep into stoppage time, Atleti were awarded a penalty, for a dubious handball, which was duly dispatched in the 99th minute.
Déjà vu because, back in September, Atlético had also beat Espanyol 2-1 in Catalonia, once again scoring nine minutes into additional time.
This defeat means Espanyol haven’t won on the road since New Years’ Eve, but have claimed all three points from their last three home matches.
Can they extend that streak to four with a victory here?
Rayo Vallecano meanwhile sat in a Champions League place on Christmas Day, but still haven’t won in La Liga in 2022.
Los Franjirrojos were beaten again on Saturday, going down 1-0 at Mendizorrotza against bottom of the table Alavés.
So, since the turn of the year, Andoni Iraola’s side have lost nine of 13 matches, drawing the other four.
This means los Vallecanos are now 14th, five points above the drop zone, needing to, belatedly, find a win from somewhere to guarantee safety.
Everything points towards a home win at RCDE Stadium.
Espanyol team news
Raúl de Tomás scored his 15th La Liga goal of the season last weekend, meaning he’s netted 41% of Espanyol’s goals.
Right-wing-back Óscar Gil went off at half time on Sunday so Aleix Vidal could deputise for him.
Wǔ Lěi scored a last-minute winner in Espanyol’s last home game so will be hoping to start this one.
Rayo Vallecano team news
Radamel Falcao has scored twice against Espanyol in his career but won’t be adding to that as he’s not played since 26 February due to injury.
Sergi Guardiola will continue as the lone front man in his absence.
Iván Balliu is suspended, following his red card on Saturday, so Mario Hernández will come in at right-back.
Granada CF vs Espanyol Barcelona - 0:0
Espanyol Barcelona vs Valencia CF - 1:1
Deportivo Alaves vs Espanyol Barcelona - 2:1
Espanyol Barcelona vs CA Osasuna - 1:1
Real Madrid vs Espanyol Barcelona - 4:0
|Latest match form, last 5 games:||
Rayo Vallecano vs Levante UD - 2:4
RCD Mallorca vs Rayo Vallecano - 2:1
Rayo Vallecano vs Villarreal CF - 1:5
Getafe CF vs Rayo Vallecano - 0:0
Rayo Vallecano vs Real Sociedad San Sebastian - 1:1
|May 22, 2022||LaLiga 21/22||Granada CF||0 - 0||Espanyol Barcelona|
|May 14, 2022||LaLiga 21/22||Espanyol Barcelona||1 - 1||Valencia CF|
|May 11, 2022||LaLiga 21/22||Deportivo Alaves||2 - 1||Espanyol Barcelona|
|May 8, 2022||LaLiga 21/22||Espanyol Barcelona||1 - 1||CA Osasuna|
|April 30, 2022||LaLiga 21/22||Real Madrid||4 - 0||Espanyol Barcelona|
|May 20, 2022||LaLiga 21/22||Rayo Vallecano||2 - 4||Levante UD|
|May 15, 2022||LaLiga 21/22||RCD Mallorca||2 - 1||Rayo Vallecano|
|May 12, 2022||LaLiga 21/22||Rayo Vallecano||1 - 5||Villarreal CF|
|May 8, 2022||LaLiga 21/22||Getafe CF||0 - 0||Rayo Vallecano|
|May 1, 2022||LaLiga 21/22||Rayo Vallecano||1 - 1||Real Sociedad San Sebastian|
|Espanyol Barcelona||Rayo Vallecano|
|134||Shots on goal||134|
|156||Shots off goal||180|
|46%||Average ball possession||48%|
|7||Shots on bar||5|
|34||Goals by foot||30|
|5||Goals by head||8|
|0||Shots on post||4|
|Espanyol Barcelona||Rayo Vallecano|
|1.65||Average Goals Scored||1.23|
|April 21, 2022||LaLiga 21/22||Espanyol Barcelona||0 - 1||Rayo Vallecano|
|December 5, 2021||LaLiga 21/22||Rayo Vallecano||1 - 0||Espanyol Barcelona|
|July 24, 2021||Club Friendly Games 2021||Espanyol Barcelona||0 - 2||Rayo Vallecano|
|January 31, 2021||LaLiga 2 20/21||Espanyol Barcelona||2 - 3||Rayo Vallecano|
|October 18, 2020||LaLiga 2 20/21||Rayo Vallecano||1 - 0||Espanyol Barcelona|
La Liga table:
|11||RC Celta de Vigo||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|13||Real Betis Seville||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|15||Real Sociedad San Sebastian||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
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What time is kick off between Espanyol Barcelona vs Rayo Vallecano?
17:00, Thursday 21 April 2022