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Primera División

  • April 16, 2011
  • • 21:00
  • • Estadio Santiago Bernabéu, Madrid
  • Referee: César Muñiz Fernández
  • • Attendance: 80000
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El Clasico preview: Real Madrid - Barcelona

El Clasico preview: Real Madrid - Barcelona

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With Jose Mourinho's men still toiling to get a foothold in the Primera Division, Saturday's encounter against rivals Barca is the last chance to end their title drought


PROBABLE LINE-UPS
Real Madrid: Casillas; Ramos, Pepe, Carvalho, Marcelo; Khedira, Alonso; Ronaldo, Ozil, Di Maria; Adebayor


Barcelona: Valdes; Alves, Pique, Busquets, Adriano; Xavi, Keita, Iniesta; Villa, Messi, Pedro



DID YOU KNOW?
  • Real Madrid have only ever won when they’ve taken the lead in La Liga action this term
  • The Bernabeu club tend to be quick starters when they play home Clasicos; registering in the opening 15 minutes of four of the last six
  • This season, Madrid have proven the best team offensively in the league in the early stages of games, striking 11 times in the opening quarter of an hour.
  • Spanish players account for only two goals scored by Jose Mourinho’s men in league action this season (Sergio Ramos vs. Athletic Bilbao and Esteban Granero vs Almeria)
  • The 31-time Spanish kings have conceded the fewest left-footed goals in the Primera Division this season (three), and also the fewest goals from set pieces (three)
  • Barcelona have won their last five matches against Madrid, representing their best sequence of results against the nine-time European champions
  • Pedro is the only player to have scored in each of the last two fixtures between the sides, while Lionel Messi has registered in his last two matches at the Bernabeu
  • Pep Guardiola’s side have scored fewer headed goals in the Primera Division than all of their rivals, barring Espanyol and Getafe, but they have scored more than any other team from outside the box (14)
  • The opening 15 minutes of matches has proven kind to the visitors this season; they’ve yet to concede during that time-frame.


LAST MEETING


November 29, 2010: Barcelona 5-0 Real Madrid

The Clasico of late November will be remembered as one of the complete performances from Barcelona, who played some otherworldly football to make their great rivals look distinctly average. Lionel Messi had hit the post before strikes from Xavi and Andres Iniesta put the hosts 2-0 up at the break. There was no relent thereafter, as David Villa struck a brace and Jeffren Suarez got on the scoresheet before it all got rather ugly at the death, with Sergio Ramos dismissed.

Players to watch

Ricardo Carvalho

Position: Defender

Games: 0

  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
Ricardo Carvalho has proven to be an inspirational signing for Real Madrid. The Portuguese centre-back has done sterling work in steadying their back line, providing solidarity that simply wasn’t there in the past. Was a member of the team whipped 5-0 by Barca earlier this season and will be hungry for revenge, particularly since he is suspended for the first Champions League encounter between the sides. If the champions aren’t to run riot again, the 32-year-old has to be at his best.

L. Messi

Position: Attacker

Games: 5

  • 9
  • 0
  • 0
Lionel Messi has proved to be an influential figure in Clasico fixtures of the past, but he failed to get on the scoresheet last time the sides met way back in November. Indeed, the diminutive Argentine has failed to score in any of his eight previous fixtures against a Jose Mourinho-coached side. Already boasting 48 goals for the season, he could break that duck in historic fashion if he was to get a brace at the Bernabeu.

Editor's Prediction

Jose Mourinho enjoyed the upper hand over Pep Guardiola before having his record spectacularly shattered in Camp Nou early in the winter. That was a match that simply moved to underline Barcelona’s dominance in Spain at present. While a repeat of that scoreline is highly improbable, it’s the visitors who’ll start this match as favourites, and they should be expected to win a fiery fixture.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Real Madrid

Barcelona

Wins
2
1
2
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Real Madrid CF RMA
Real Madrid CF Real Madrid
Draw
FC Barcelona FCB
FC Barcelona Barcelona
70%
27%

Top 3 Predictions

Real Madrid CF RMA
9 - 0
FC Barcelona FCB
Real Madrid CF RMA
8 - 0
FC Barcelona FCB
Real Madrid CF RMA
7 - 0
FC Barcelona FCB

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