Real Betis look like the best pick to win the Copa Del Rey for the third time in their history as they take on Valencia on April 23.
Who do Bettors Favor?
The best online sportsbooks show that bettors are siding with top-five team Real Betis in the Copa Del Rey Final Match Outcome markets. Betis are around +110 while Valencia are the clear underdogs at +200 and the draw is generally at +240. In the tournament winners’ markets, Betis are rated as -150 chances while their opponents can be backed at Evens.
|Copa Del Rey Winner|
Betting on the Copa Del Rey
This competition is known for being more unpredictable than La Liga. Notably, of the big three, Real Madrid hasn’t won the Cup since 2014, and Atletico Madrid’s last win was back in 2013. Thus far in this century, Espanyol, Zaragoza, Deportivo la Coruna, Mallorca, Betis, Sevilla, Valencia, and Real Sociedad have all lifted the trophy, which represents an attainable piece of silverware for most top-flight teams.
Both of this year’s finalists have lifted the trophy, but there is a significant discrepancy in their past success. Valencia has reached the final 17 times, winning it on 9 occasions, including in 2008 and 2019, while Betis have featured in only four finals, with two wins, the latest being in 2005.
Route to the Final: How They Got There
After beating CFI Alicante, Talavera, and Real Valladolid to come through the early rounds of this season’s Copa del Rey, Real Betis’ first major challenge was in the round-of-16 against local rivals Sevilla. They won that game 2-1 before thrashing Real Sociedad 4-0 in the quarter-finals, but had to work a lot harder in the semi-finals. After winning the first leg against Rayo Vallecano 2-1, they trailed 1-0 in the second leg before an injury-time equalizer from Borja Iglesias took them through.
Valencia had the easiest path through to the final, beating four teams from the lower leagues and then overcoming lowly Cadiz in the quarter-finals. They faced a tougher challenge in their semi-final against Athletic Bilbao, but a goal from Goncalo Guedes just before halftime in the second leg secured Valencia’s progression, having secured a hard-fought 1-1 draw in the first leg.
Real Betis v Valencia: Head to Head
Valencia and Real Betis have met 51 times in competitive action and it is Valencia who hold the upper hand. Los Che have won 27 of those games, with Real Betis winning 13 and 11 games drawn. They have met only four times in the Copa del Rey and Valencia also has the edge, with three wins from four meetings with one draw, though this will be the first time they have lined up in opposition in the final.
In recent months, Betis have had the edge over their top-flight rivals, winning two of their last three, including a 4-1 thrashing in La Liga, back in October and Valencia have won only one out of their previous five games during what has been a troubled spell for the club.
Copa Del Rey Team Form
From early December through to the end of February, Betis were punching above their weight, occupying third in the league table, but defeats to Sevilla and Atletico Madrid, combined with the improvement of both Atletico and Madrid, has seen them slip to fifth. They also suffered a disappointing exit from the Europa League at the hands of Eintracht Frankfurt, eventually going out on penalties.
A run of seven games without a win had dropped Valencia into the bottom half of the table, but since the end of February, their form appears to have lifted, at least on paper, with three wins and two draws. However, given that all five of those games came against teams in the bottom seven, the turnaround isn’t as impressive as it first seems, being enough to solidify their mid-table spot but not much more than that.
Best Bet for Copa Del Rey Final
Valencia’s apparent upturn in recent games, combined with the mini-slump that Betis have endured may tempt bettors to take a chance on the underdogs here, particularly given their strong record in this competition, but that could be a mistake.
As indicated above, Valencia’s run of success has come against some of La Liga’s worst teams, and there remain plenty of questions about their true ability, even if the lingering possibility of relegation has now been firmly dispelled. Put simply, Betis are a significantly better team, led by an experienced manager in Manuel Pellegrini, who has impressive credentials at the top level.
Not only are they the stronger team, but they also have home advantage, of a sort, with this game being staged in Seville. In fact, you could argue that they should be a shorter price to win this game, and I think it is worth picking them to do it in normal time. That said, we can probably expect this to be a tight and cautious occasion, and I’m opting for a low-scoring game in the Over/Under 2.5 Goals market.