Real Zaragoza v Levante preview
Midfielder Edu Oriol was on target as Real Zaragoza beat Athletic Bilbao 2-0 on Sunday to keep alive their hopes of surviving the drop and he believes his side's performance against the Europa League finalists can give them great confidence heading
Last Updated: 01/05/12 4:15pm
Midfielder Edu Oriol was on target as Real Zaragoza beat Athletic Bilbao 2-0 on Sunday to keep alive their hopes of surviving the drop and he believes his side's performance against the Europa League finalists can give them great confidence heading into the final three games.
Manolo Jimenez's side have now won five of their last eight Primera Division games but remain four points off safety and face another side full of confidence when Levante travel to La Romareda on Wednesday.
Oriol told a press conference broadcast on the club's website: "Our numbers from the second half of the season are that of a Champions League team and the fans have been 10 out of 10 all season so we just have to give everything in the little that remains of the season and see what happens.
"We knew before the Athletic game that we had to win and bring our best version as a team and individuals and that is what happened."
Oriol is also grateful to Jimenez for giving him his chance in the team.
"The first thing is you want to play and since the arrival of Jimenez I have had more time on the field. You need rhythm and to feel important because at the start of the season I wasn't enjoying hardly any minutes on the pitch. A game like this fills you with confidence. It was the game I had dreamed of."
Carlos Aranda has been ruled out again for the hosts with a muscular problem, but otherwise Jimenez has no new injury worries.
Levante meanwhile have a big prize of their own still to play for as they target Champions League football for the first time in their history.
Saturday's 3-1 win over Granada, allied to Malaga's 1-0 win over Valencia, means Los Granotes are just three points off third and with a more favourable run-in than their rivals.
However, they have been dealt a severe blow with the news that top scorer Arouna Kone is expected to miss the rest of the season with a foot injury.
Jose Barkero is also expected to miss the trip to Zaragoza after straining his hamstring against Granada, so there could be a recall in attack for Abdelkader Ghezzal and a rare start for one of Ruben Suarez or Nabil El Zhar.
Best bet: Real Zaragoza 2-1 - 15/2