Barca travel to Moyes’ Sociedad where they simply hate playing
Real Sociedad are undefeated in their last five home games against Catalan giants Barcelona in all competitions, winning three, and are fantastic chances with Coral to beat them again at 8/1.
Former Manchester United manager David Moyes has started his tenure with the Basque outfit reasonably well, losing just one of his opening seven fixtures, and keeping four clean sheets along the way. He has, however, drawn four of those, with his side 9/2 chances to take a share of the spoils again.
Sociedad are tempting 11/1 shouts not to concede once more, 25/1 to win to nil and 18/1 for the score to be 0-0. But a 1-1 draw (odds of 9/1) looks the more likely result, as was the score at the Anoeta Stadium against Barca last season in the Copa del Rey.
Moyes will be hoping to rely upon the likes of Imanol Agirretxe, Gonzalo Castro and Sociedad leading marksman this term Carlos Vela, who have all netted against the Catalan club before. They are 3/1, 9/2 and 14/4 chances respectively to score again anytime here.
Ahead of the Scotsman’s biggest game in Spain so far, Moyes said: “We respect Barcelona because they are very good. They have been the best in the world over the past 10 years in possession of the ball.
“Collectively, they are very dangerous, and individually, any player can win a match on their own. But they are coming to San Sebastian and we need to show them again that it’s not an easy place to come to and win.”
However, Barca come into this game on the back of a terrific run, winning 10 of their last 11 matches in all competitions (losing none), and are the heavy odds-on favourites at 2/7.
They have also been destructive in front of goal, netting a total of 25 from their last five victories before the winter break, at an average of five per fixture. Luis Enrique’s men are 9/1 to score that many or more again, or a safer 10/3 for four or better.
Lionel Messi will be the usual suspect for Sociedad to look out for, as the Argentine has been on target in each of his last five La Liga matches against them (netting six overall). He is odds-on at 8/15 in the anytime market and 13/5 to strike first.
Former Liverpool star Luis Suarez, meanwhile, will be looking to add to his tally of one goal from his first eight Spanish top-flight games, and he is 11/10 to score anytime.
Barca are currently in second place, one place and a point behind bitter rivals Real Madrid, who have a game in hand over them.
Sociedad, meanwhile, are down in 14th, and just two points above the drop zone, so getting any points here will be a real boost in confidence for the Basques.