The closest La Liga title race in years resumes on Saturday, as second place Real Madrid welcome fifth place Real Sociedad to the Bernabeu. 


Madrid currently only trail first place Barcelona on goal difference, and will look to continue to keep pace with their great rivals with victory on Saturday. 


Their convincing 4-0 win at Eibar last time out suggested Zinedine Zidane's men have begun to find their form this season. However, Madrid may have one eye on their crucial Champions League fixture against PSG on Tuesday. 

Los Blancos face La Liga's biggest surprise package this season in the shape of Real Sociedad. The visitor's sit just three places and two points behind Madrid in the table after their impressive start to the campaign. 


Saturday's fixture will see the highly rated ​Real Madrid loanee Martin Ødegaard return to the Bernabeu, four and a half years since his last (and so far only) appearance there as a 16-year-old. 


A hugely entertaining 90 minutes is in store as two of Spain's top teams go toe to toe.


Where to Watch

When is Kick Off?​Saturday 23 November
What Time is Kick Off?​20:00 (GMT)
Where is it Played?​Santiago Bernabeu
TV Channel/Live Stream​Premier Sports 2, La Liga TV
Referee​Jesús Gil Manzano

Team News

Whether Gareth Bale will be selected remains to be seen, after the Welshman angered Real Madrid bosses after ​celebrating his country's Euro 2020 qualification with a flag which read 'Wales. Golf. Madrid. In that order'. He has not featured for his club since October 5.


James Rodriguez will miss the fixture after straining his knee ligaments while on international duty. The Colombian midfielder had only just been making his way back to full fitness, with his last appearance for Real Madrid coming on October 22.


Marco Asensio is still a long-term absentee after rupturing his ACL during pre-season. He is joined on the treatment table by Nacho, who sustained a knee injury against Club Bruge in the Champions League, and is expected to be out until the new year. 

Lucas Vazquez

Lucas Vázquez fractured his left toe in training and may also miss out for Los Blancos.


Despite being on loan for Real Madrid, Martin Ødegaard is available for Real Sociedad. The young Norwegian has ​dazzled this season, but there are doubts as to whether he will start after only recently recovering from an injury that kept him out of Sociedad's last two games.


However, Sociedad are still without their captain, former Real Madrid midfielder Asier Illarramendi, after he broke his leg in August. 


Predicted Lineups

Real Madrid​Courtois; Carvajal, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo; Casemiro, Modric, Kroos; Hazard, Rodrygo, Benzema
Real Sociedad​Remiro; Zaldua, Le Normand, Llorente, Monreal; Zubeldia, Elustondo, Merino; Oyarzabal, Portu, Willian Jose, 

Head to Head

Luka Modric,Asier Illarramendi

​The two sides have met 47 times, with Real Madrid winning 27 of those encounters. Real Sociedad have come out on top 11 times, and the remaining nine meetings have ended in a draw.


Despite Madrid's superior record, Sociedad did the double over the Spanish giants last season, winning 2-0 at the Bernabeu and recording a 3-1 home win on the penultimate day of the season. 


Recent Form

Karim Benzema

Real Madrid appear to be finding their rhythm i​n recent weeks after registering emphatic wins over Eibar, Galatasaray and Leganes.  


Karim Benzema has four goals in his last two games, and at the other end Madrid have been water tight, not conceding in five games. 


Real Sociedad have been excellent this season, with their entertaining, free flowing football really catching the eye. However, they have showed signs of being unable to keep this up over the last month, labouring to a draw with bottom side Leganes, and losing at home to Levante. 


Here's a look at their last five outings.


Real MadridReal Sociedad
​Eibar 0-4 Real MadridReal Sociedad 1-1 Leganes ​
Real Madrid 6-0 Galatasaray​Granada 1-2 Real Sociedad
Real Madrid 0-0 Real Betis​Real Sociedad 1-2 Levante
Real Madrid 5-0 Leganes​Celta Vigo 0-1 Real Sociedad
​Galatasaray 0-1 Real Madrid​Osasuna 0-0 Real Sociedad

Prediction

Federico Valverde

Real Sociedad have been a joy to watch this campaign, with Mikel Oyarzabal​ a creative force out wide ​impressing at home and abroad. However, they have showed signs of stuttering in recent weeks, and a trip to Real Madrid will require them to be at nothing but their best.


Real Madrid appear to be entering a purple patch of form. Unless they choose to heavily rotate their squad ahead of Tuesday's Champions League clash with PSG, Los Blancos should secure all three points from this one.


Prediction: Real Madrid 2-1 Real Sociedad