Alaves v Sporting Gijon - Sunday 17:15, Sky Sports 5
For both of these sides it was mission accomplished in week one. Newly promoted Alaves, back in the top tier of Spanish football for the first time since 2005/06, drew 1-1 with Atletico Madrid after some stoppage time drama which saw both goals scored. Similarly, Gijon went into their game against Bilbao as underdogs, but outperformed their Basque rivals, winning the contest 2-1 as they should have been out of sight had it not been for some wasteful finishing.
In Segunda last season Alaves conceded just 35 goals and only 14 in their 21 home games. They were however not prolific at the other end as their matches averaged just two goals per game. They haven’t really strengthened up top and their leading striker Toquero is getting on a bit, so we’d expect them to be involved in plenty of low scoring games, particularly at the Mendizorrotza Stadium, where they’ve been so strong defensively.
Gijon were joint fifth lowest scorers in La Liga last season and this was largely due to their paltry return of 12 goals on the road. Since 14 of Alaves’ 21 home games last term saw fewer than three goals, while eight had fewer than two and 12 of Gijon’s road games also had fewer than three strikes, we think this one could be a cagey affair and are backing Under 1.5 goals.