Friday, 15 April 2011

El Clasico battles commence

What an exciting three weeks we have install; Barcelona and Real Madrid will play four times in the space of 18 days which will decide their fates for this season. They are set to play in La Liga, the Copa del Rey final and the Champions League – all the games should be fascinating and should ooze quality.

The first of these four thrillers is the 2nd La Liga game between the two Spanish giants; the first was won by Barcelona by five goals to nil at the Camp Nou. It was an incredible game which demonstrated the Catalan’s prowess and ability. Since that day Barcelona have managed to open up at eight point gap at the top of the table with seven games remaining. The Spanish league rules state that if sides finish level on points then the overall winner will be the team with the better head to head record.

It has been an incredible season for Barca already; they are on for the treble at the moment which would be their second under Pep Guardiola. They are without doubt the best club side in the world and there is reason to suggest they could be the best side in the history of the game. Three of their players were the finalists in the Ballon d’Or nominations this season which is a testament to their recent success.

Over in Madrid the entire season now hinges on these games. There is still the possibility of them walking away with the double (the league looks unlikely) which would be another feather in Mourinho’s cap. They are through to the semi-finals of the Champions League after an emphatic win over Tottenham in the quarters. The defeat at the Camp Nou will have hurt the Portuguese manager more than he would admit in public. He was completely unable to prevent the rout and he has not been in that position many times in his career.

The first game was without doubt the best game of football I have seen this season and possibly even longer. The levels of skill and technique were higher than anything you see in England and it was a pleasure to watch. Hopefully these four games will live up to expectation – I’m quite sure they will.

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