Celta Vigo will continue their pursuit of a place in the top half of the La Liga table on Saturday, when they entertain Elche.
The hosts find themselves one point behind 10th-placed Valencia with two games to go, while their visitors need a maximum of one point to confirm their survival.
After looking set to be involved in the fight for survival at the halfway stage of the La Liga season, Celta Vigo have vastly improved their fortunes since mid-December.
An accumulation of 13 points from a span of six games around the turn of the year ensured Eduardo Coudet’s side moved well clear of the bottom three, and, despite struggling for consistency, they have done enough to continue a steady climb in recent months.
Los Celestes added an 11th notch to their league wins column earlier in May, as they thrashed Alaves 4-0 thanks to an Iago Aspas brace and goals from Thiago Galhardo and Franco Cervi, but they were unable to further add to their points tally last time out.
Coudet’s side faces the tough test of a trip to the Camp Nou to take on Barcelona, and, despite Aspas pulling a goal back in the second half, they left empty-handed following a 3-1 defeat.
Thankfully for Celta Vigo, Valencia also failed to pick up a result in the week, meaning Los Celestes remain one point behind with two games to go and could jump into the top half with a victory on home turf.
Elche coach Francisco Rodriguez on March 6, 2022© Reuters
They take on an Elche side who find themselves in a comfortable position in the bottom half, having done enough to all but confirm their safety.
Francisco’s side did look to be in some danger with 32 points from 31 La Liga games before they pulled out two crucial victories consecutively, firstly beating 18th-placed Mallorca 3-0 to put daylight between themselves and the drop zone.
Tete Morente then fired them to an impressive 1-0 win away at top-four hopefuls Real Betis, before Los Franjiverdes added another important point to their tally with a draw against Osasuna.
While they have since suffered back-to-back defeats heading into the weekend, Elche have put themselves six points clear of the bottom three with two games to go, meaning a positive result on Saturday or a failure from Mallorca to win their game would confirm their survival.