The planet’s two best players meet once again in a match of huge importance in the La Liga title race. Victory for Barcelona would put them 11 points ahead of Madrid and all but end Los Blancos’ hopes of retaining their title, while still in the second month of the season.
There is incentive enough for a big performance from these two footballing goliaths, and both players will fancy their chances of getting on the score-sheet.
Indeed Cristiano Ronaldo has almost become accustomed to netting in Clasicos, scoring in each of the last five meetings, while also becoming the first Madrid player in history to score in four consecutive matches at the Camp Nou.
The price of evens (2.00) of him scoring at any time looks like holding a great deal of value, with Ronaldo in fine form having scored consecutive hat tricks in his last two games.
Barcelona’s defence will be makeshift at best, missing as they are both Carles Puyol and Gerard Pique.
Ronaldo though has never scored more than a single goal against Barcelona, and can be backed to change that at 7/2 (4.50) to score two or more, and 12/1 (13.00) to claim a third consecutive hattrick.
Messi meanwhile, has failed to score in his last three matches, although that is hardly a reason to back against him.
If there is one player on the planet that punters can have faith in, it is the exceptional Argentine who has scored 14 times against Real Madrid, and is offered at 1/2 (1.50) to do so at any time on Sunday. He can be backed at 7/2 (4.50) to open the scoring, or at 2/1 (3.00) to score two or more goals, something he has done on four previous occasions.
There will of course be 18 other outfield players on the pitch on Sunday, and a number of them are worthy of consideration for your investment in the goalscoring market.
Karim Benzema has been in tremendous form for Real Madrid, scoring some stunning goals. He has netted three times in his last four matches, as well as scoring three goals in previous encounters against Barcelona.
The price of 8/1 (9.00) for him to score first could well appeal as a value bet.
Meanwhile for the Catalans, the inspirational figure of Xavi, enjoyed his best ever scoring season in the previous campaign and the price of 11/2 (6.50) for him to score at any time looks extremely tempting.
|Cristiano Ronaldo to score any time at evens (2.00) with William Hill
||Xavi to score at any time at 11/2 (6.50) with William Hill|
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Phil Kitromilides is a sports broadcaster working on radio and TV in London and Madrid. You can also follow Phil on Twitter.