Valencia host Spanish champions Real Madrid at the Mestalla stadium on Sunday in an intriguing La Liga fixture.
Valencia are winless in their last four games in the league, managing only one point in that time from the 2-2 draw against Getafe last week.
After conceding twice late in the game, Javi Gracia's men had a Carlos Soler penalty in the 10th minute of stoppage time to thank for salvaging a point and halting their three-game losing streak.
Los Che sold several key players over the summer including club legend Dani Parejo and young sensation Ferran Torres, making wholesale changes to their squad. The club have struggled in the absence of these stars and sit a lowly 13th in the league.
To add to their woes, Valencia were rocked on Tuesday by the departure of midfield general Geoffrey Kondogbia to Atletico Madrid.
Real Madrid have looked far from convincing this season, but have managed to get the job done in all but two of their league games. They are second in La Liga, with a game in hand over table-toppers Real Sociedad.
Los Blancos come into Sunday's fixture on the back of a much-needed 3-2 win over Inter Milan in midweek Champions League action. Teenager Rodrgyo Goes struck the winner for Madrid in the 80th minute, after Antonio Conte's men had previously nullified their two-goal advantage.
Struggling star Eden Hazard returned to the scoresheet in the side's 4-1 win over Huesca in their previous La Liga fixture and should provide a huge boost to Zinedine Zidane's men, who are desperate for more goals.
Valencia vs Real Madrid Head-to-Head
Valencia vs Real Madrid is one of the most exciting and competitive fixtures in Spanish football. For years, Valencia have had the reputation of being Real Madrid's "bogey team".
In the previous 10 fixtures between the two sides in Spain's top division, Valencia have beaten Real Madrid twice, while drawing three games and losing five. However, in the past seven years, Madrid have managed only one win at Mestalla in La Liga.
Valencia form guide in La Liga: W-L-L-L-D
Real Madrid form guide in La Liga: W-W-L-W-W
Valencia vs Real Madrid Team News
Valencia will be without their French centre-backs Eliaquim Mangala and Mouctar Diakhaby. The latter is out for a while with a hamstring injury, while Mangala missed training on Wednesday because of pharyngitis. Kondogbia's sudden transfer also leaves boss Javi Gracia short of options in midfield.
Injured: Mouctar Diakhaby, Eliaquim Mangala
Meanwhile, Real Madrid will miss the services of defender Eder Militao and midfielders Eden Hazard and Casemiro, who tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of the team's departure for Valencia. In addition, right-back Dani Carvajal, midfield wonder-kid Martin Odegaard and versatile defender Nacho Fernandez are unavailable for Zidane. Doubts remain over the availability of Alvaro Odriozola and Mariano Diaz.
Injured: Nacho Fernandez, Martin Odegaard, Dani Carvajal
Doubtful: Alvaro Odriozola, Mariano Diaz
COVID-19: Eder Militao, Eden Hazard, Casemiro
Valencia vs Real Madrid Predicted XI
Valencia Predicted XI (4-4-2): Jaume Domenech, Thierry Correia, Gabriel Paulista, Hugo Guillamon, Jose Luis Gaya, Yunus Musah, Carlos Soler, Daniel Wass, Denis Cheryshev, Goncalo Guedes, Maxi Gomez
Real Madrid Predicted XI (4-3-3): Thibaut Courtois, Lucas Vazquez, Raphael Varane, Sergio Ramos, Ferland Mendy, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Federico Valverde, Rodrygo Goes, Karim Benzema, Isco
Valencia vs Real Madrid Prediction
Valencia's defence has leaked 13 goals in eight games. Only relegation-battlers Celta and Huesca have conceded more in the league. The club appears to be heading towards a season to forget. But if history is witness, Valencia always give it their all against Real Madrid.
Javi Gracia will need to motivate his side to step and play their best 90 minutes of football against a star-studded Los Merengues.
Real Madrid impressed in their previous two La Liga fixtures, but are still looking for consistency. Zidane will look to play out from the back and press high up the field to disorient a Valencia side short on quality.
Zidane has suffered two defeats and has only one win in four league visits to Mestalla as Real Madrid manager, but the French coach will fancy his chances on Sunday, given Valencia's poor form.
Prediction: Valencia 1-3 Real MadridPublished 06 Nov 2020, 20:45 IST