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Having gained a victory the last time the teams met, our Spanish expert Phil Kitromilides believes Mourinho's side should be backed to avoid defeat in this first leg

The 12th Clasico in the last two years sees these two rivals meet in what would otherwise be a fairly meaningless fixture against another opponent.

The Spanish Supercopa effectively means extremely little, but when it sees Barcelona and Real Madrd pitted against one another, it becomes more than merely a curtain-raiser to the season, and turns into a vital encounter in the constant battle to gain the psychological advantage.

Barcelona have of course, in recent years, had the upper hand both mentally and in footballing terms, with Madrid recording just one victory in their last 15 encounters.

William Hill price another win for the Spanish champions at 3/1 (4.00) while Barcelona can be backed at 5/6 (1.83) and the draw is offered at 14/5 (3.80).

Given that the last seven Clasicos have seen both teams score, it is hardly surprising to find a repeat offered at 8/15 (1.53). The odds are not huge but for punters looking to invest in a relatively low-risk bet this looks like a wise selection.

For those with a more casual approach, the price of 19/20 (1.95) on 'Real Madrid or Draw' looks to offer some considerable value in the double chance market.

Though Madrid's recent record in this fixture is far from impressive, crucially the last time the sides met, back in April, it was Los Blancos who earned the victory with the 2-1 win at the Camp Nou all but sealing their 32nd League title.

The psychological barrier has been broken and Madrid under the guidance of Jose Mourinho, the master of the two-legged tie, are more than capable of coming away from Catalonia with at least a draw.

In terms of a value bet, the price of 10/3 (4.33) for Madrid to win the first half looks tempting, given that this bet has paid out in two of the last three Clasicos.

BET
OF THE
DAY
BEST BET
VALUE BET
Real Madrid or Draw at 19/20 (1.95) with William Hill
Real Madrid to be ahead at half time at 10/3 (4.33) 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.

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