Real Madrid V Barcelona
20:45 Kick Off Live on Sky Sports 1 HD
El Clasico is is one of the most eagerly anticipated fixtures of the season and also the most watched football fixture in the world with estimates putting it at at least 100 millions viewers world wide.
Locally it draws fierce rivalry as much as anywhere else and an age old political debate about Gibraltarians supporting Spanish teams gets thrown into the mix. But IGAF about politics when it comes to football, as a Liverpool fan I don’t support either but love watching it as much as any football fan; this is where two of the best teams in the world settle one of the biggest rivalries in Europe and where we get to watch the best footballers go head to head.
Los Galaticos and Barca have come head to head on no less than 265 occasions spanning back throughout their illustrious histories and as it stands Barcelona are ahead overall with 109 wins in comparison to Real Mardrid’s 97, leaving 59 matches that have ended in a draw. Goals wise, Barcelona have netted 460 goals against their bitter rivals and Madrid have returned the favour 433 times.
Barcelona’s form has been lacklustre in the past 5 matches; won 2, lost 2 and drawn 1 across all competitions. Their last game was a 0 – 0 UEFA Champions League draw to Juventus where they failed to replicate the magic of their incredible come back to knock out PSG.
Real Madrid have had a bit of a better run in their last 5 across all competitions with 2 wins and 3 draws, their last match knocking Bayern Munich out of the UEFA Champions League after a controversial home win in Extra time.
In La Liga it’s going Madrid’s way – marginally with a game in hand and 3 points clear of Barca at the top, this would be the day to change everything for Luis Enrique’s men.
Neymar won’t be included in the squad due to a suspension picked up from a red card against Malaga, this was extended to a three match ban after he mocked the 4th official with a sarcastic applause when walking off the pitch. The Brazilian International has netter 9 goals and 9 assists in La Liga this season and will be a big loss for Barca in this match. Leo Messi and Luis Suarez will both be available and up to cause Madrid problems; the pair have a combined 53 La Liga goals between them this season.
The bookies see Real Madrid as the favourites tonight and have Real Madrid to win @21/20 across the board but you can get best price of @11/10 with Stan James. Barcelona to win are best priced @12/5 with William Hill, Stan James, Betfair and a couple of others while the draw is best priced with Bet Victor @16/5. Given the prices I’d be tempted with backing Barca @12/5.