Levante v Real Madrid preview
By Steve Harrison - @The2020. Last Updated: September 17, 2011 10:41am
Ronaldo: Hoping to be fit
Real Madrid will look to keep up their winning start to the new season and remain at the summit of La Liga as they travel to Levante on Sunday.
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Jose Mourinho's side are perched above the rest of the league - including Barcelona - after the opening two games having seen off Real Zaragoza 6-0 in the opener and Getafe 4-2 at the Santiago Bernabeau last time out.
Madrid scored the highest amount of goals in the league last season with 102 - seven more than rivals Barcelona, and look in no mood to quell their attacking threat with 10 goals already this season.
Levante had one of the more modest records against Real last season, drawing their clash in Valencia 0-0 and losing 2-0 in Madrid. Juan Ignacio Martinez's men suffered a humiliating 8-0 defeat in the Copa Del Rey, albeit when former manager Luis Garcia was in the dugout, and will be looking to avoid another drubbing at the hands of Los Merengues
Cristiano Ronaldo, who is expected to be fit after picking up a knock in the midweek Champions League win at Dinamo Zagreb, has already notched four goals this season and will no doubt have set his sights on repeating last year's record of 41 league strikes. With Karim Benzema and Gonzalo Higuain also opening their accounts for the year against Getafe, it looks like any defence coming up against Mourinho's side will find themselves in for a long evening.
With Levante looking light up-top - they have only scored more than once in a game on one occasion in the last eight and scored just once this season - Arouna Kone, Nabil El-Zhar and Ruben Suarez will be expected to share the workload and save the team from relegation this term.
The Granotes gained a credible draw away to Racing Santander, who had put three past Valencia on matchday one, with man-mountain Sergio Ballesteros in fine form. There will have to be more of the same from Levante's defence if they're to quash the threat of Real Madrid's plethora of attacking talent.
Levante will hope to replicate last season's home form of nine wins as new manager Martinez takes charge at Ciutad de Valencia, but Real Madrid - who were winning over half of their away matches at half time last season - might not give him the home debut he wants.
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