As the top four of Spain’s Primera Football Division gear up to face each other, a host of factors will seek to influence who come out tops after this round of fixtures.
Ronald Koeman’s Barcelona will square up against Diego Simeone’s Atlético Madrid on Saturday afternoon, while Real Madrid will host Sevilla under the floodlights on Sunday evening.
For the Blaugranas, a win will see them go above Atlético before Real Madrid face Lupotegi’s men on Sunday. However, Barcelona have shown that they are prone to capitulation when it matters most this season; loosing their key outstanding fixture to Granada last week and failing to produce a convincing performance in both legs versus Real Madrid.
However, the Messi-led side can draw inspiration from their recent league victories against Villarreal and Valencia away from home – with Messi and Griezmann firing on all cylinders in recent times.
Meanwhile, Atlético Madrid have finished games on the knif-edge, grinding out points after an impressive start to the 2020/2021 season. Their 1-0 victory to Elche last week could have ended stalemate if Elche had converted a dying-minute penalty. Simeone’s men go into the big fixture knowing a draw will not be bad after all..
Real Madrid will have to put their Champions League exit behind them if they are to defeat Sevilla. Asides the 1-0 loss to Bilbao on Monday, Julien Lupotegi’s side has proven they are no push overs this season; cementing their top four spot whilst rubbing shoulders with Spain’s best three this season.
With Madrid staring a potentially trophiless season, the game against Sevilla will be a must win for Zidane; who looked outclassed by Thomas Tuchel in both UCL semi final legs.
Sergio Ramos’ return to fitness and Benzema’s prolific form could serve as inspiration for Los Galacticos on the night.