Real Madrid goes into Wednesday's game against struggling Villarreal looking to rebound from a draw that boosted rival Barcelona's slim hopes of winning a fourth straight Spanish league title.
The Spanish leader conceded a stoppage time equalizer Sunday in a 1-1 draw against Malaga that allowed Barcelona to move to within eight points of the lead.
Villarreal coach Miguel Angel Lotina will make his debut for the struggling club. (Read full report of his appointment)
Meanwhile, Barcelona has won seven straight overall ahead of Tuesday's game with Granada.
Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola said his team's chances of winning the championship were near zero before Madrid's draw, but Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas responded with "I don't care what Guardiola says ... we never thought the league was done."