The El Clasico is here at last.
Barcelona and Real Madrid collide in their first La Liga match of the year, and this is a big one. While Real Madrid sits atop the Spanish League standings, Barcelona isn’t going away. This game features some of the most talented soccer players in the world.
Let’s preview the game and pick a winner.
This is an absolute must win game for Barcelona and their fans know it. They are six points back in the league standings behind their fierce rivals, and a home loss against Real Madrid this week would be devastating.
It all starts with Barcelona’s South American trio. Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez know the significance of this match as they’ve played in numerous El Clasico’s before. Messi has the second most goals in the league thus far, but Neymar has been in a bit of a scoring slump. Time of possession will be key for Barcelona if they are going to take down Real Madrid.
As usual defense is critical, especially against a powerhouse like Real Madrid. Barcelona’s defensive unit has been tightening up in recent games, which is obviously a positive sign for the home team.
Real Madrid (10-3-0)
Real Madrid just needs to stick to the plan. They’ve yet to be defeated even once this season, and let’s not forget they did beat Barcelona at the Camp Nou last year, 2-1, thanks to Cristiano Ronaldo’s late goal. To no one’s surprise, Ronaldo leads La Liga in goals scored this season with 10.
The X-Factor in this game will be Colombian middle-fielder James Rodriguez. He’s almost become the forgotten man on this roster, but when Rodriguez is playing at the top of his game, Real Madrid are usually unbeatable.
Unfortunately for Real Madrid, they will not have Gareth Bale. Bale is going to be sidelined for a few months with an ankle injury. With Bale out, Karim Benzema’s responsibility will certainly increase.
Barcelona and Real Madrid will play each other on Saturday at 10:15 a.m. ET American time and 4:15 p.m. Barcelona time. It will be played at the Camp Nou. You can watch a live game stream here.
Not having Bale, playing at the Camp Nou and the fact that Barcelona has to win make this game lean in Barcelona’s favor. Ronaldo may get a goal, but Messi will have the last laugh as Barcelona inches closer in the La Liga standings.
Barcelona wins 2-1