There are new leaders in LaLiga after a pulsating El Clasico on Sunday evening, but, can Real Madrid extend their lead at the top of the table by seeing off Real Betis this weekend, and will Barcelona return to their winning ways against Real Sociedad?
Barcelona vs Real Sociedad
Real Madrid could go into their fixture against Real Betis in second spot should Barcelona get back to winning ways against Real Sociedad on Saturday evening. The defeat in El Clasico was a disappointing evening for Barca, as they would have felt that they had the chances to take all three points. Antoine Griezmann and Lionel Messi both missed glorious chances in that game, but they shouldn’t have any concerns as they hope to get back to winning ways against Sociedad.
Prior to their defeat against Madrid, Barcelona had won their last four. Quique Seiten certainly has his side pulling in the same direction, and the ensures that they won’t be giving up in this title race just yet. Defensively, they have struggled throughout the season as they have conceded 31 goals, which is the most of all the sides in the top five. Messi’s form has been brilliant once again this season, as he has scored 18 goals and made 12 assists in 21 appearances. He was in excellent form during their recent 5-0 win over Eibar, and he could once again be the star of the show in this fixture.
Sociedad have been in great form throughout the season, and they are just two points outside of the top four. They have lost just once over their last five fixtures, but if they could get a win against Barcelona, it would be a huge shock. Sociedad managed to get a win in their last game in LaLiga as Adnan Januzaj scored the only goal of the game against Valladolid. However, it is incredibly unlikely that they will follow that result up with another win against Barcelona, which means the preference would be for the home side to claim the win.
Real Betis vs Real Madrid
Zinedine Zidane would have been delighted with his team’s efforts during their recent win over Barcelona. Real were dominant from start to finish as they claimed a vital 2-0 win. Vinicius Junior and Mariano were the goalscorers for Real in the final 20 minutes, but they will need to continue their good form against Betis. Otherwise, their lead at the top of the table could quickly disappear.
Real have struggled for consistency over their last five games, as they have won three times, but also drawn and lost on one occasion. Their loss during that run was a shock 1-0 defeat against Levante. That defeat was quickly followed up with another defeat against Manchester City in the Champions League. That meant that their win in El Clasico was vital moving forward. Eden Hazard and Gareth Bale will once again be missing for the league-leaders, but Karim Benzema should be fit enough to start.
Many expected Real Betis to be fighting for a European place this season, but instead, they are languishing towards the bottom of the league table. They have been in dreadful form over recent weeks as they haven’t won in their last five. During that spell, they have lost twice and drawn on three occasions. They will go into their fixture against Madrid having lost against Valencia in their last outing. Betis fell to a 2-1 defeat with Lorenzo Jesus Moron Garcia’s goal only proving to be a late consolation.
The preference in this fixture would be for the league-leaders, as they look to extend their lead at the top.