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Real Madrid vs Barcelona
Competition: La Liga
Kick Off time: 21:00 GMT / 22:00 CET / 16:00 EST
Stadium: Santiago Bernabeu
Watch Real Madrid vs Barcelona on TV in the USA.
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Barcelona vs Arsenal Live at the Camp Nou - 20:45 PM Local Time - 14:45 EST
Last week millions of fans all over the world witnessed one of the most entertaining matches of the year. It took place at the Emirates Stadium in London where the Kings of World Football FC Barcelona visited the Princes of Football Arsenal in the first leg of the quarter-final pairing in the UEFA Champions League.
It was branded as a clash of the 2 most entertaining sides of football on the planet. After 45 minutes the fans were left with some harsh reactions. Barcelona fans were left salivating yet frustrated, Arsenal fans were left in fear and astonishment. Neutral fans were left mesmerized and in awe as one could not deny the superiority of the Catalan side. The first half display could only be described as a manhandling of the not-so-English London side. Two stats will tell the tale of the first half: 0-0 scoreline. Possession 75% Barcelona to 25% Arsenal.
The story of the first leg
Barcelona were only capable of collecting a 2-2 draw when they traveled away to the Emirates Stadium, despite leading 2-0 in the early moments of the second half.
Barcelona displayed a superb performance in the first 20 minutes of their clash against Arsene Wenger’s side, taking both the wings and the center of the field to as attacking measures.
The Arsenal defense was resistant, and an ineffective Zlatan Ibrahimovic was incapable of stealing an early lead for Barca.
Barcelona drew 2-2 with Arsenal in midweek in the UEFA Champions League, while Athletic Bilbao were 4-3 winners over Racing Santander on Monday.
Barcelona – Managing the squad
Earlier this season, the Blaugrana drew 1-1 with Bilbao away from home, and Lionel Messi was the victim of a serious injury.
But this time, seeing that Andres Iniesta might again be out of action, another injury would be unacceptable for Barcelona who face Arsenal in the Champions League again next Tuesday, and Real Madrid in La Liga next Saturday.
Perhaps, precautions from the home side against the Andalusians might slow down the pace of the game, but the result will be the most important thing in the end.
A second consecutive draw for Barcelona would not be advisable, since they are still behind Los Blancos in La Liga standings on goal difference.
The restart of European competition is nearing and teams involved will see rotations in their lineups and will look to solidify their identities and build momentum. Barcelona and Real are ready to engage in an enthralling feud for first. Barcelona enter this week amidst referee controversy and injuries but remain the team to beat. Real, on the other hand, are claiming a newfound hunger and style, and a comfortable win against last place Xerez would further dispel doubts. Valencia, Sevilla, and Deportivo will continue to add spice to the league, with Mallorca playing the Cinderella role, as they continue their undefeated run at the Ono Estadi. The middle of the table promises to sizzle, as only 10 points separate 6th place from 10th and traditionally strong sides like Athletic Bilbao, Atlético, Getate, and Villarreal are in the mix. At the bottom, Valladolid and Zaragoza hope that their new coaches can steer them clear out of relegation. Watch Atletico Madrid vs FC Barcelona Live
Atlético Madrid vs Barcelona – 3:00 PM EST (Vicente Calderón)
Atlético historically plays open, high-scoring games versus Barcelona, although last year the much-anticipated match-up Agüero-Messi at the Camp Nou resulted in a lopsided win for the Blaugrana. Atlético are 12th with 24 points and must begin looking upward on the table in a season filled with inconsistencies. This week they will not prepare for Barcelona until they stamp their passport to the Copa final this Thursday versus Santander. They travel to Rácing with a 4-0 lead and they won’t want this opportunity to pass them. Their performance in this game will surely condition play versus Barça on Sunday. But Atlético have plenty of firepower of their own and their fans will push them to ride the Copa del Rey success until Monday.
Not much has changed since last week in the Spanish league. With both Real Madrid and Barcelona living up to their expectations, Valencia stumbled on its trip to Andalusia. Now the top is being jealously guarded by the giants, while Atletico and Sevilla are close to face each other at the Copa del Rey final match. The relegation zone has become unstable, so from now on the battle will be fought in three fronts.
Saturday 6th, February 2010
Valencia vs Valladolid - 12:00 AM EST
After the trip to Andalusia last week much has changed for the Murcielagos. They were experiencing a major winning streak and even hoped with taking the second position off Real Madrid's hands. But it was Sevilla's striker, Negredo, who judged Valencia was to suffer if they meant to reach the top. David Villa remained a shadow being absolutely disconnected with the midfield playing, and so now the top has again escaped from their hands and even qualification for the European competitions has become something to fight for.
Last week's match day 19 brought the end of the first half of La Liga, and the perspective at this point looks rather monistic. With an undefeated Barcelona experiencing the solitude of the top, Valencia has become the solid third alternative for the title. But they'll be facing a direct rival to retain their position on a match against a newly recovered Luis Fabiano hungry for glory.
Saturday January 30th, 2010 - La Liga Match Previews
Sporting Gijón vs Barcelona - 2:00 PM EST
Last week triumph brought much to Blaugrana's fans. They've finally left the Real Madrid eight points below them, holding the top for at least three weeks more, but Messi also obtained the rank of Pichichi of the league, having scored his thirteenth goal to sentence the 3-0 against Valladolid. Not only that, Its been 19 matches for the Barcelona without tasting the bitterness of a defeat, consolidating the best streak in their history. With Dani Alves going through its best moment in the league (he made a goal and an assistance to get the 2-0 last week) the offensive capabilities of Pep Guardiola's team are something to fear. Last two matches away their returned home with five and three goals, respectively, and their own goal undefeated, and it's hard to imagine such a streak might change its course.
Sporting Gijon will have a test of fire against the Barcelona. They've lost their two last matches, and another week without points might take them to the lower half of the positions table. Last week they showed they could achieve victory, but their inconsistence rendered them hopeless. Team's coach Manuel Preciado, confessed its team lacked both luck and decision to obtain a victory, and such indetermination will be even stronger against the Barcelona, so he'll have to show its players a way to succeed if things are going to change this week. Watch Sporting vs Barcelona Live
A matter of points and shape
FC Barcelona will make their come back as the leaders of the league table with 39 points – also 18 points ahead of 9th place Villarreal, and two points in front of archrivals Real Madrid.
The Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola will still need to take things pretty delicately, following the fragile condition they currently find theirselves in. So far, the Catalans are without a domestic loss this season, but there were times when it looked like their form’s foundation was getting weaker.
FC Barcelona to go in the clash without Lionel Messi
Barcelona currently have a 5-point lead at the top of the La Liga table with an additional game, but things could go less smoothly for them as a reason of their match this Saturday at the Camp Nou.
Fortunately for them, archrivals Real Madrid also have a strong challenge ahead of them against Valencia this weekend, and the Blaugrana can only wish the worst for their league contenders; should they take advantage of the Barcelona vs Espanyol game.
Being their final game in the Champions League’s group stages, both sides will look ahead to getting nothing but a good result. Barcelona currently lead the Group F with 8 points following their comfortable 2-0 win at home against Inter Milan; however, Dynamo Kiev find themselves at the bottom of the table with 5 points after a single win in 5 Champions League games this season.
Looking at these facts, one could be aware that both sides will play with different purposes – despite equally taking the Dynamo Kiev vs FC Barcelona fixture seriously.
5 points clear at the top
3 points at the Camp Nou last Sunday in the big clash against Real Madrid allowed Pep Guardiola’s boys to find themselves back at the top of the table with 2 points ahead of Los Blancos.
The Catalans were then aiming to extend the gap to 5 points when they visited Xerez on Tuesday evening, and indeed, despite the lack of pace and organization they showed against the bottom side, they managed to obtain a 2-0 win which helped them reached their target.
The clash is regarded as the greatest football match of the year in Europe. Possibly, it is one of the hottest encounters in football ever, being regarded as the “War of the Stars”.
Only a single point separate the two Spanish giants at the top of the Spanish League table, and Barcelona therefore face the danger of letting the gap expand to 4 good points, if ever they fail to get a victory against Real Madrid in Cataluña this Sunday.
The two sides’ meetings last season – both home and away – incontestably showed how strongly the Catalans were able to impose themselves over their long-time rivals; but with a highly reshuffled Real Madrid side this time around, things could be pretty different this weekend.
La Liga’s Most Heated Rivals FC Barcelona & Real Madrid Take the Field in Biannual Battle for Spanish Pride and Glory Exclusively on GolTV
MIAMI – Nov. 23, 2009 – GolTV, the only bilingual channel delivering 24/7 soccer, will telecast live coverage of La Liga’s most anticipated match between rivals FC Barcelona and Real Madrid as they compete in El Clásico on Sunday, Nov. 29. Currently the top ranked clubs in La Liga, FC Barcelona and Real Madrid will face off for the first time this season at Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain.
Starting at 12:00 noon EST GolTV is committing two extra hours of programming time around the match to give soccer enthusiasts the in-depth, pre- and post-game analysis they demand. Additionally, GolTV is sending legendary sportscasters Luis Omar Tapia and Eduardo Biscayart to Barcelona’s Camp Nou to provide live exclusive, Spanish-language commentary throughout the match, delivered in their uniquely dynamic styles.
Stories from the past
The two sides met on several occasions out of the Spanish League competition, but unquestionably, their most entertaining meetings took place this year, as both sides met in the Copa del Rey final, and then went on to decide the Spanish Super Cup title.
In all, Barcelona were definitely the conquerors, humiliating the Basques 4-1 at the Mestalla stadium to clinch their first domestic cup last season, and enjoying an aggregate 5-1 score line later on in the Super Cup.
Of course, these facts prove how well the defending Spanish League champions have often managed to come out on top of Athletic Bilbao.
Not the time to relax
The league leaders’ crushing 6-1 victory against Real Zaragoza at the Camp Nou made many fans believe that the Catalans were back on track for good, as they had previously failed to get a win in two consecutive games.
Well, after such a brilliant result, it didn’t really look like things were at their very best for the Blaugrana, following a disappointing draw to Osasuna trough a late Gerard Pique own goal.
Barcelona still have more time ahead of them to strengthen their foundation, but it is clear that this weekend’s game at home to Real Mallorca will be a glorious chance for them to prove themselves again in front of their own fans.
Barca brilliantly bounced back from a weak form that saw them go two games without a win in the league and the Champions League, but another challenge is still awaiting them away from home.
The First Leg
One could expect this game to be dominated by the Catalans, bearing in mind that Barcelona have successfully regained their shape; yet, it is the first leg’s story which seems to make the excitement ahead of this game huge.
Barcelona were stunned by 2 goals to 1 in their own stadium several days ago by the Russian side Rubin Kazan, and unquestionably, it was a match the home side could clearly have turned into their favor. Nevertheless, mistakes in the defense, as well as lack of precision in front of goal cost them an upset, as they went on to miss another 3 precious points, which could have extended their lead at the top of table with 7 good points.
This is indeed surprising for a team as wonderful as Barcelona, who had established a 100% record in La Liga earlier on with 18 points out of six 6 games. Nonetheless, they might probably get the chance to redeem themselves on Sunday when they host 13th place Real Zaragoza at the Camp Nou.
Not Easy to get back on track
There is no doubt most Barca fans believe that their side will be able to humble Zaragoza in other to remain at the top of the Spanish League table. For sure, it could be an easy encounter for Pep Guardiola’s team, but the fact that the Blaugrana could feel under pressure due to their reduced lead at the top of the standings could affect Sunday’s game’s result.
Looking at the two sides presented by the fixture of the match which is set to take place at the Camp Nou on Tuesday, it is easy to think that the encounter will be a matter of favorites and underdogs; yet, the fact that both teams have little knowledge about each other is – in fact – what makes the game unpredictable.
Two sides that have never met before
Barcelona got the chance to top their table, but with only 4 points though, following their 0-0 draw at the San Siro, and their 2-0 home win against Dynamo Kiev. Eventually, with this achievement already done, the Catalans will surely look to keep their lead at the top of their group by beating their Russian opponents, so as to make sure that contenders Inter Milan and Kiev don’t surpass them in the standings.
The Spanish giants indeed have a lot of chances to humble their fellow-European visitors, but still, they will need to be cautious and take control of the match right from the very start, before Rubin Kazan cause what would be considered as an “upset”.
Valencia fighting for a place in the top four
The Spanish club VCF is currently occupying the fifth place in the standings, and mathematically, even a win at home against leaders Barcelona will not automatically guarantee them a place in the top four places of the table.
With two giants preparing to meet each other, there is no doubt the game will get a lot of attention. Hence, a special outcome could take place, but a disappointing display from both sides could also reduce the excitement towards the big match.
As always, a win for Barcelona will be Pep Guardiola’s main target during the game, but – in addition to this – the Spanish manager will also want his side’s victory to be huge in terms of goal margin; as surpassing rivals Real Madrid in goal difference could have an impact on Los Blancos’ mentality.
Subsequent to 3 draws, 1 loss and a single win in 5 games, Almeria lie in 11th place with only 6 points in the Spanish league standings. Therefore, a victory in Catalonia could easily place them into the first half of the league table; yet accomplishing such a task will be very difficult, as Almeria are yet to succeed away from home this season.