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Espanyol vs Real Oviedo tips and predictions: Hosts to battle back in low-scoring clash

Espanyol trail Real Oviedo at the halfway stage of the LaLiga 2 promotion play-offs. Football tipster Sergiu Baltuta is tipping the home side to bounce back on Sunday (1730 BST)

After a captivating season, La Liga 2 is ready to determine the final team that will be promoted to La Liga as Espanyol, trailing 1-0, host Real Oviedo.

Despite winning the first leg, Oviedo are still seen as underdogs to progress with Espanyol expected to secure an immediate return to the top flight.

Manolo Gonzalez’s side has made hard work of it, though. They drew eight of their last 11 matches and thus finished three points shy of automatic promotion.

Javi Puado’s 88th-minute goal away to Sporting Gijon was enough to settle the two-legged semi-final on aggregate, even though they invited pressure with a red card in each leg.

The defeat in the first leg against Real Oviedo ended an unbeaten run of 18 matches for the Catalans.

Real Oviedo drew 0-0 with Eibar in the home leg before winning 2-0 away from home. Just weeks earlier, Oviedo lost 4-3 at the Estadio Municipal de Ipurua in a wild encounter.

Maintaining their advantage might be challenging given Espanyol's impressive unbeaten home record that now stands at 16 games since losing against Leganes in October.

Still, they’re already the surprise package this season, and Luis Carrion’s side is yet to concede a single goal in the play-offs.

On the other hand, games away from home have been their achilles heel. They’ve won just four of their last 14 matches. Notably, they lost at Espanyol during that run.

You have to go back to 1991 to find the last time Oviedo won this fixture away from home and although it’ll be a tight game, the expectation is the hosts will at least force extra time.

 

Suggested bets

Espanyol to win

Under 2.5 goals

 

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