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La Liga giants clash in El Clasico – Real Madrid vs Barcelona – Prediction

[box type=”shadow” align=”alignleft” class=”” width=””]Prediction: Real Madrid are placed better than Barcelona for this game. Consider them to be at least 1 goals above Barcelona if not 2 or more. If at the start Real Madrid go aggressively against Barcelona then there is no stopping that.[/box]

 

clasicoWhenever the football season starts, no matter which part pf the world you are in, if you are a fan then El Clasico – Real Madrid vs Barcelona – is the fixture you always watch out for. When two of the best sides on the planet go head to head, it is hard not to take time out from your schedule and stay glued to the TV. Seldom has this fixture not lived up to the hype. Real Madrid vs Barcelona is always a cracking contest, but this season’s installment of the now epic rivalry has even more interesting narratives than usual.

For starters, we have the Lionel Messi saga. The Argentine appears to have defied the odds and looks to be fit in time to make the game, albeit he may have to be content with an unfamiliar role on the bench. Messi is understood to be back in training with the rest of the Barca first-team squad, but his fitness might not be sufficient for Luis Enrique to risk playing him for a full 90 minutes. It must have been a difficult managerial decision for Enrique to take considering that Messi has almost always had a big impact in this particular fixture.

While Barca are currently struggling with fitness issues, Real boss Rafa Benitez’s side are relatively strong in terms of options. Karim Benzema and Keylor Navas may miss out, but Cristiano Ronaldo is set to feature, and doesn’t appear to be in bad shape at all. Messi’s arch rival Ronaldo has been under speculation that he is miffed with Real Madrid president Florentino Perez’s decisions in recent years, including the sacking of Carlo Ancelotti and the decision to replace him with Benitez, a manager not deemed high profile enough by Ronaldo. He is said to be eyeing a move away from La Liga, possibly to Ligue 1 or back to Manchester United. However, Ronaldo is expected to be the perfect professional and maintain his performance levels as long as he is still in Madrid.

Away from the players involved, Saturday’s clash could see a new La Liga leader emerge. Heading into the game Atletico Madrid are top the table, but with three points between the sides, Barca could climb above with a victory thanks to their head-to-head record, while Real Madrid’s superior goal difference would have the same effect. However, any change is unlikely to last long, with Atleti playing rock-bottom Real Betis on Sunday.

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