Preview: Barcelona tries to get back to winning ways against Bilbao
Mathematically it will not be possible for Atlhetic Bilbao to reach the top three, but they will at least have a chance of getting very close. Sunday they make a trip Camp Nou, where they take on a frustrated Barcelona squad.
After their elimination from the Champions League against Atletico Madrid, Barcelona was defeated in the Copa del Rey final against Barcelona. They are now seven points back of the league leaders, but with a game in hand.
Barcelona’s defeat mid-week against Real Madrid was their third consecutive defeat, which is the first time in 11 years.
It’s always a big occasion when these two clubs lock horns, especially when it’s a cup final. Historically this fixture has arguably provided football fans with more exhilaration than any other match in Spain and the game between the two sides always lives up to the expectations.
Real Madrid and Barcelona have already met twice this season and on both occasions the match has ended in favour of the Catalans. However things might turn out to be different this time around with Barcelona on a disappointing run which has seen them loose both of their last two matches.
The second Clasico of 2014: The Copa del Rey Final will be played at the neutral ground of the Mestalla Stadium in Valencia, Spain.
The Spanish Cup Final - El Clasico - will air on April 16th, 2014 at 3PM EST / 12 noon PST. The match will be broadcast live in the US on ESPN (english), ESPN Deportes and ESPN Deportes Radio (spanish). You can also tune into the match online in both English and Spanish languages on WatchESPN (authenticated users only).
El Clasico always attracts global attention due to the intense Spanish rivalry between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona. This match is even more signficant since Barcelona have just recently been kicked out of the UEFA Champions League and have very likely just seen their La Liga title hopes slip away with their most recent loss this past weekend, leaving them in third place behind Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid. This might be Barca's only chance at silverware this season as well as Carlo Ancelotti's first chance for silverware with Los Blancos. The world will be watching. See broadcast details below for US television, radio and online coverage of El Clasico 2014, the second of the year:
ESPN NETWORKS : SPANISH CUP FINAL 2014 TV PROGRAMMING
English Language Programming:
ESPN Copa del Rey Final Coverage: (Check ESPN Listings)
Spanish Language Programming:
ESPN Deportes Copa del Rey Final coverage: (Check ESPN Deportes Listings)
Season falling apart for Barcelona
After being tactically outclassed in the second leg of the Champions League by Atletico Madrid at the Vicente Calderón, Barcelona suffered another heart-ache as Yacine Brahimi’s solitary goal of the match subjected the Blaugrana to their second successive loss on Saturday against Granada.
In the course of the two matches, Barcelona have been knocked out of the Champions League a competition they have fared well in recently having made it to the semi-finals in each of the last six seasons.
Unlike ahead of the first Clasico of the year 2014, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are not in top form. Leo has gone missing lately while CR7 is out injured. So which players will leave a mark on the game?
Two stars under pressure to perform are Neymar and Gareth Bale. Both completely rocked the 2013 summer transfer window and are expected to justify their astronomical price tags. Indeed, the stage has been set for Neymar and Bale to strengthen their rivalry and overshadow, at least for a day, the mouth-watering Messi-Ronaldo clash which cannot take place in the 2014 Copa del Rey final.
Preview: Granada will try to take advantage of a frustrated Barcelona
The chase for the La Liga title continues on Saturday evening, as Barcelona travel to Granada. Bouncing back from a mid-week disappointment will be the priority, but the Catalans also have a Copa del Rey final coming up.
After a 1-0 defeat against Atletico Madrid, which eliminated Barcelona from the Champions League, many are questioning Martino’s future at the club.
He is now asking for his players to respond on Saturday, against a Granada side that are just three points clear of the relegation zone. With six league games remaining and one point between separating them from the top spot, every point is important.
Probabilities are very few with only four teams left, yet many fans are lost in predictions. How will Atletico Madrid, Bayern Munich, Chelsea and Real Madrid be paired on Friday in Nyon?
Atletico Madrid arguably provided the biggest result in the Last 8 by kicking giants Barcelona out of the competition. The Rojiblancos needed a lone goal from Koke in the second leg to beat the Catalans 2-1 on aggregate.
This sealed the fact that “Barca are out whereas Bayern, Atletico, Real…
Preview: Atletico hoping to make full use of away goal advantage
Diego Simeone’s men unfazed by an energetic home crowd in the first leg put an emphatic showing at the Camp Nou. Despite a setback which saw star man Diego Costa stretched off due to an injury Atleti remained the most dangerous side in the first half and could have taken an early lead had David Villa been more clinical. It was a wonder strike from Brazilian midfielder Diego Ribas which gave the visitors the lead and Atletico were poised to end the first leg with a goal advantage until Neymar leveled the scores in the 71st minute.
Preview: Forgetting the negative news surrounding the club is key for Barcelona
The La Liga campaign is coming to an end, but things just do not get any easier for the Blaugrana. After their injury blow to Victor Valdes, the Catalans are now facing a transfer suspension from FIFA.
On top of a possible suspension, Barcelona drew mid-week at home against Atletico Madrid, in the first leg of the Champions League quarterfinals. A wonder goal from Diego put the visitors ahead, but Neymar slotted a ball past the Atletico goalkeeper, but that was all the hosts could do.
FC Barcelona’s 2013/14 pre-season campaign was tarnished with tax fraud allegations against Lionel Messi. As if it wasn’t enough, the mighty Spanish club was then accused of transfer fraud concerning Neymar’s move away from Santos. The intensity of this transfer issue led to the resignation of Sandro Rosell as club president in January.
Problems continue to hurt Barca under new president Bartomeu. On Wednesday, the Catalans were slapped with a two-transfer window ban for “illegal buying and selling of players under 18” according to FIFA.
However, Barcelona vice president Javier Faus is certain that “enemies” are behind all the controversies to fall down the club.
Speaking to the Spanish press on Thursday, Faus boldly declared:
Preview: Spanish League rivals lock horns in Champions League
Atletico have defied all odds by rising to the top of the La Liga table and with just seven matches to play in the league, Atleti will be confident of their chances.
However the league leaders are closely tracked by their opponents on Tuesday who trail Diego Simeone’s men by just a single point. But both the teams will have to keep their league affairs at the side for now as they concentrate in clinching qualification to the last four of the Champions League.
Preview: Barcelona can go top of La Liga, before their rivals take the pitch
Just a week ago, claiming the La Liga title looked very difficult for Gerardo Martino. After an important victory over Real Madrid, and three points mid-week against Celta Vigo, the Blaugrana are ahead of the Merengues, and just one point back of Atetico Madrid.
On Saturday, Barcelona will be without Victor Valdes. The Spanish goalkeeper was stretchered off against Celta Vigo, and was ruled out for the rest of the season with an ACL injury.
Preview: Barcelona will want to avoid a let down after their important El Clasico victory
An emotional rollercoaster at the Santiago Bernabeu on Sunday ended well for Barcelona. Three goals from Messi helped lift the Catalans over Real Madrid, and they will now have a chance to go top of the league, given Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid's late kick-off.
Luis Enrique, a former Barcelona captain, will prepare his side for a very difficult match at the Camp Nou. Enrique has been linked with the managerial position at Barcelona, but the Catalans opted to go with Gerardo Martino. And despite all the doubt involving the Argentine's future at the club, Barcelona's president as well as Martino have stated publicly that his contract will be honored.
Ronaldo penalty vs Barca brings up Messi penalty vs Man City debate
Fans from both the sides were furious at some of the decisions the referee made during the course of the match and one of these decisions which still continues to divide opinions was Undiano Mallenco awarding Real Madrid a penalty for a foul Dani Alves had seemingly committed outside the box.
Ronaldo scored from the resulting penalty and the Blaugrana faithful were left fuming.
In what is arguably one of the most scintillating domestic football showpieces, two of the most successful Spanish teams will go head to head in a tie which could ultimately prove vital in the title race for the league crown. Real Madrid who had initially lost ground on the race for the title have responded strongly and now enjoy a four point lead over the Catalans. The Castilians suffered a defeat in the return leg back in October when they suffered a 2-1 loss at the Camp Nou and will be looking to make amends this time around.
Here are five ways Real Madrid can get the better of their bitter rivals and gain an important advantage in the title race.
Duel dua raksasa Spanyol, Real Madrid melawan Barcelona dalam partai yang dikenal dengan sebutan El Clasico akan tersaji kembali hari Minggu ini, 23 Maret, 2014 di Stadiun Santiago Bernebau. Menderita kekalahan pada pertemuan pertama mereka atas El Barca pada akhir October taun lalu, Madrid mengincar pembalasan pekan ini dan anak buah Carlo Ancelotti memiliki modal besar untuk meraih tiga popint dalam partai tersebut. Semenjak kekalan 2-1 di Camp Nou, hingga saat ini, Los Blancos belum sekalipun menyentuh kekalahan di semua ajang, sebuah pencapaian yang sudah sepatutnya memberikan kepercayaan tinggi pada Cristiano Ronaldo dkk menjelan big match mereka minggu ini.
Walaupun kondisi mereka bisa dibiliang lebih baik jika dibandingkan dengan rival mereka, Ancelotti tetap menyadari bahwa apapun bisa terjadi dalam El Clasico, untuk itu dia berusaha untuk sedikit meringankan beban anak asuhnya dengan menyatakan bahwa partai minggu nanti belum akan mententukan gelar juara La Liga. Mantan pelatih AC Milan tersebut berasalan bahwa dengan adanya Atletico Madrid sebagi pesaing Madrid dan Barca, dia percaya bahwa gela juara baru akan bisa dipastikan pada akhir musim. Biarpun begitu, raihan tiga poin di Santiago Bernebau nanti akan bisa membuat Los Blancos melepaskan diri dari kejaran El Barca karena jarak tujuh poin bisa jadi akan membuat posisi dari anak asuh Tata Martino makin sulit.
Enjoy the broadcast of Real Madrid vs Barcelona in live streaming on your mobile, computer, or TV with beIN Sports. LiveSoccerTV has an exclusive list of compiled live listings from Canada, UK, USA and the world.
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The previous meeting ended 2-1 in favour of Barca. Messi and Ronaldo’s presence was overshadowed by Neymar’s dream debut in El Clasico and Alexis Sanchez’s wonderful long-range strike.
PSG, FC Barcelona, Atletico Madrid and Bayern Munich qualified first. They were joined by Chelsea, Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund and Manchester United. The Last 8 line-up is a mouth-watering one. Who are the favourites to reach the semis?
Round of 16 results – how it happened
Les Parisiens gave Bayer Leverkusen no chance in the Round of 16, thus underlining their ambition to seat at the table of giants on the European scene. One of PSG’s targets is to clinch the giant UEFA Champions League trophy. With on-fire Zlatan Ibrahimovic, few may underestimate the chances of the French team to progress into the Last 4.
Preview: Osasuna will try to distance themselves from the relegation zone
A mid-week victory over Manchester City should propel Barcelona to a positive result on Sunday. The Blaugrana were beginning to come under fire, but their performance on Wednesday will have silenced even a few of their doubters.
They will take the pitch on Sunday with a seven-point gap between themselves and league leaders Real Madrid.
Second placed Atletico Madrid also won their match on Saturday, putting them four points adrift of the Catalans. It will now be Barcelona’s job to cut that lead down with a victory over Osasuna at the Nou Camp.
Preview: Camp Nou to witness a battle of wounded warriors
On Tuesday night in Munich, Arsenal became the first English team to crash out of the 2013/14 UEFA Champions League. Manchester City are on the brink of an exit as well. They will need a miracle at the Camp Nou but how possible will it be, knowing that they carry the wound of their shocking loss 2-1 to Wigan Athletic in the FA Cup?
The two protagonists ahead of Wednesday’s showdown are Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero. Either of the two Argentines may decide the game. Between them, there have been eight goals. Aguero had to miss the first leg as he was recovering from injury. His return in the UEFA Champions League has been greeted with much talk.