The Clasico is looming and it’s a chance for Barça to put four points between themselves and rivals Real Madrid. Barcelona are coming back from a high after beating Manchester City in the their Champions League match in midweek and have just found out they will face PSG, while Real beat Levante by 2 goals to nil in La Liga with Gareth Bale netting a brace in an attempt to win back the Merengue supporters.
The sure option would be to go for Barcelona but a Clasico match is not as easy as that, is it? Both teams are trying to put behind them recent bad results, scandals and poor form, but who will take home the bacon on 22 March? Barcelona are firm favourites and playing at the Nou Camp makes it that much more easier, if you like, for the Catalans.
Points to think about regarding Sunday’s Clasico
Mascherano is out to prove himself in Luis Enrique’s system. With Sergio Busquets out, Mascherano is more suited to the role of a deep-lying midfielder in the new manager’s team in contrast to the one that Guardiola put together. he will be free to feed the ball to Jordi Alba, Ivan Rakitic or Iniesta, whilst protecting his centre backs.
Bale and Bartra. This is another point to think about ahead of the Clasico. Marc Bartra has come on leaps and bounds and is a worthy candidate to take on the mantel of Carles Puyol. However, being skinned alive by Gareth Bale who scored as a result of some blistering speed down the flank made him look amateur, especially as he tried to take Bale out. Bartra is no match for Bale in a 100 metres race and Bale will surely try to exploit that on Sunday. If he gets away with it, it will surely take the pressure off him as the Real Madrid fans are an unforgiving bunch.
Ramos back for Real Madrid. One of real’s key players will be back for Sunday’s Clasico. Sergio Ramos is back in defense and should provide the missing link to Real’s defensive woes of late. It’s amazing how just one world class player makes all the difference. Pepe and Ramos will have to be at their very best on Sunday to thwart, was has to be one of the most formidable trios in the game – Messi, Suárez and Neymar.
The 2015 side that Luis Enrique’s presides over is a different animal to that of Guardiola’s Barcelona. The new side gets the ball forward much more quicker than Pep’s, who concentrated on tiki taka in small pockets of the pitch to dominate the game.
This could prove a spectacle on Sunday and one really has to say that this should be Barça’s game as I feel that that Real Madrid will definitely have problems containing the Catalans as was witnessed in midweek by Pellegrini’s Manchester City.