Match Preview: El Classico
It is time for the biggest league game in European football. It is time for the two maybe biggest giants in Europe to take on each other. It is called a derby but yet they are from two different cities. It is the clash of the titans. It is El Classico.
It will be played at the Santiago Bernabue on the 23rd of April at 19:45.
What is there left to say for this team. Beating the longest winning streak leading the league with three point and yet there is one game in hand. And after all of this they eliminated Bayern Munchen in the quarter finals of the Champions League with a total of 6-3. Even though they played a very good game against Bayern the focus was more on the poor refereeing than on the actual game. And looking back to the mistakes it is logical. But yet Madrid managed to create more chances, more shots and eventually more goals.
Zidane has a great squad and he has truly built a dream team. Even when resting players like Marcelo, Benzema, Ronaldo, Bale and Modric they still manage to win games easily. And that is the exact reason why they are leading the league and through in the Champions League. Whenever he needs a player from the bench they come on and do it great.
The lineup should be very similar to the one they had against Bayern Munchen. That means:
Carvajal – Ramos – Nacho – Marcelo
Kroos- Casimero – Modric
Bale – Benzema – Ronaldo
The only changes I think will be Bale instead of Isco since he should get medical clearance now. But it remains to see if Isco maybe starts instead of Casimero to get a more ball controlling midfield or if he chooses to use the counter attack against a weak Barcelona defense.
It is Luis Enriques last El Classico and for him and his team win is the only thing that counts. Trailing three points behind Madrid with six games left and Madrid having one game less played is a lot. Make it six points and you can understand it is almost impossible. A win here would put pressure on Los Blancos and with Valencia and Sevilla left between the semifinals against Atletico Madrid and there is a big chance of fighting back.
Barcelona comes from a very poor game against Juventus, or maybe one should say a very good game from Juventus. With Neymar out of the team for three games after sarcastically clapping his hand against the referee it will be even more difficult. Now how Luis Enrique will lineup is a mystery as always. What is certain is that Ter Stegen will be in goal, Umtiti and Pique in defense, Iniesta and Busquets in midfield and Suarez and Messi up front.
Will he choose a back four that means Alba and Roberto will be playing. Or will he use the 3-4-3 that he has done before in big games where everything is on stake. Paco Alcacer will probably start next to Suarez and Messi seeing that his form is somewhat good nowadays. Will Rakitic get the confidence again or will maybe Denis Suarez or Andre Gomes play next to Iniesta. Like mentioned before, it is all a big mystery
In the Spanish league if two teams have same amount of points, it is not the goal difference that decides the winner but the result of the games played between them. The first game ended 1-1 and if this one ends 1-1 Barcelona will be first if they drop to the same points due to better goal difference. But if it ends 2-2 then Barcelona have the edge with two away goals against one. Real Madrid are just coming from a tough game were they played 120 minutes. Meanwhile Barcas game was more or less done by the 70th minute knowing it is impossible to overturn. Therefore I think Barca has a little better chance of beating Real Madrid.