Sports fan’s Sunday night finishes off with a legendary rivalry match from Spain – El Clásico. Real Madrid hosts Barcelona in a game which could prove crucial to La Liga title race. For visitors Barcelona, it is very close to a must win situation.
El Clásico – to die for
With the entire footballing world watching, Spanish giants Real Madrid and Barcelona go toe-to-toe in the Spanish capital. Stakes tonight couldn’t be much higher – if Real takes the three points, they go six points clear with a game in hand, all but sealing the title with six rounds to go.
Blaugrana is close to a must win situation in order to keep their chance to reach their rivals, who have performed magnificently as of late. Barcelona on the other hand has less than impressed, taking only one win of their last four games – and that at closest possible margin at home against Real Sociedad, 3-2.
Usually proficient attack of Barcelona has been shooting blanks for quite some time now. Past four games have seen only three goals scored, all of them against previously mentioned Sociedad. To add insult to injury, Brazilian striker Neymar will be out with a stupid ban from abusing a referee after being sent off against Malaga. Three game ban will hurt Barcelona, despite Neymar’s lately fluctuating form.
Real clear favorites
Hosts Real Madrid have been in top form lately and haven’t lost in 12 games. They ousted Bayern München midweek in the Champions League, albeit after some controversy. Cristiano Ronaldo scored two goals, both of which appeared to be from offside position. However, the fact is Real made Champions League top four once again and is the biggest favorite to win it.
Coached by Zinedine Zidane, the Madrid team has managed to turn many games this season in their favor in the closing minutes of the game. Real has proven that when the stakes get higher, their performance gets better. On Sunday El CLásico, the stakes couldn’t be much higher, so Real will be prepared from the kick-off.
Last year Barcelona took the spoils from Santiago Bernabeu with convincing 0-4 away win. This time around the situation is completely different and even snatching a draw would surprise many. In addition to some rather unprecedented scoring issues, their defense has been shaky at best and easily split by sharp passing game.
At the moment, Real is clearly more balanced team and has the edge all around the pitch. With the better offense they will create a lot of scoring chances, while still remaining responsible in their defense. All in all, Real is the superior team in tonight’s matchup.
As we have seen, however, in El Clásico everything is possible – always expect the unexcpected. The home team has all the pressure, as Barcelona has perhaps never been such an underdog heading to Madrid. The visitors have a possibility to return their dignity after slumping, but for that they have to play a lot better. Can they do that and salvage the season? We’ll see at 20:45 CET!