Saturday 11 March 2200
MADRID, March 10 (Reuters) - Valencia will be looking to inflict further injury on a wounded Real Madrid when they host their Primera Liga rivals at the Mestalla on Saturday (kickoff 2100 GMT).
Real waved goodbye to their only realistic hope of a trophy this season when they went out to Arsenal in the Champions League and their only remaining aim is to finish ahead of Valencia to take second place to Barcelona in the title race.
The two teams are neck-and-neck in the standings with 51 points and victory for either side would give them an important edge in the battle to claim the all-important automatic spot in next season's Champions League.
"It is a very important game for us," Valencia midfielder David Albelda told Marca on Thursday. "There are three vital points at stake.
"They are in the same position as previous years in that they are not working together as a team, but they still possess the individual talent to win games."
Following the failure of the Real Madrid old guard to produce the goods against Arsenal, coach Juan Ramon Lopez Caro might choose to start ringing the changes against Valencia.
Ronaldo's poor form could prompt him to give Italy striker Antonio Cassano another chance up front, while Brazilian forwards Julio Baptista and Robinho should return to the fray after being left out of the starting line-up against Arsenal.
Left back Roberto Carlos is suspended after picking up a booking in last week's 2-1 win over Atletico Madrid.
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