Fresh off a 1-0 victory in El Derbi Madrileno, their first home league victory over Atlético Madrid since 2012, Real Madrid look to take their momentum into the Copa del Rey quarterfinals on Thursday. There, they face the Basque Country side Real Sociedad, who with a win would need just one more victory to reach their first final in the Spanish cup competition since 1988.
While Sociedad sit eighth on the La Liga table, with the Copa del Rey as their only somewhat realistic chance at silverware, Los Blancos are chasing the domestic double, now sitting three points clear of Barcelona atop the La Liga table — and needing just three more Cup victories to take him that silverware as well.
And with eight wins in a row across all competitions and no defeats since last October, the outlook for Zinedine Zidane's men appears positive, to say the least. There is at least some chance they could receive another boost from the return of former Chelsea striker Eden Hazard, who has missed 10 weeks with an ankle injury. But Hazard took part in Wednesday's final training session for the Cup showdown against Real Sociedad, according to an Evening Standard account, and could be back own the pitch for the quarterfinal match, or shortly thereafter.
With Real Madrid on a tear, and Sociedad coming off a defeat to Leganes last weekend, oddsmakers have positioned the home side as heavy favorites to advance to the Copa del Rey semifinals, according to Bleacher Report.
The site published odds that put Real Madrid at 6/13, meaning that a wager of $13 would return a profit of just $6 if the hosts, as expected, come out on top. But the visitors from San Sebastián have been installed as extreme longshots at 31/5. In other words, a $5 bet returns $31 if the Basque Country club somehow pulls off the upset. Or if looked at another way, a $100 wager would pay off $620 if Real Sociedad beats the La Liga leaders.
The odds on the match ending in a draw have been set at 15/4
If Real Sociedad are to manage the upset, the game may turn on a Real Madrid player who currently competes for the visitors. Attacking midfielder Martin Odegaard has accumulated four goals for his club in league play this season, more than any player win the team, outside if the strikers. The Norwegian is in the first of a two-season loan deal with Sociedad.
"I'm just taking each day as it comes," Odegaard said, as quoted by AS.com. "I'm really happy here."
The Real Madrid vs. Real Sociedad match kicks off at 7 p.m. Central European Time on Thursday at Santiago Bernabeu Stadium in Madrid. In the United States, where the match will be carried live by the ESPN+ streaming service, that start time converts to 1 p.m. EST. 10 a.m. PST.