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Real Madrid VS Barcelona – LIVE Reddit Soccer 21/03/2022

Real Madrid VS Barcelona – LIVE Reddit Soccer 21/03/2022

Real Madrid are currently 10 points clear of second-placed Sevilla at the top of the table, while Carlo Ancelotti’s side have a 15-point advantage over Barcelona heading into this weekend’s contest. Real Madrid have not been without their problems this season, but the capital giants have been, by a distance, the standout side in Spain’s top flight this term, and it would be a huge surprise if they were unable to win the title from this position, boasting a 10-point advantage over second-placed Sevilla. The latest edition of El Clasico will take place at Bernabeu on Sunday evening, as La Liga leaders Real Madrid welcome third-placed Barcelona to the Spanish capital.

Barcelona have not actually beaten Real Madrid in La Liga since March 2019 – losing four of their last five meetings in Spain’s top flight – but it would be fair to say that they are a different side to the one that lost the reverse match at Camp Nou back in October. The Catalan outfit have also won their last four league matches, including a 4-0 success over Osasuna last weekend, while they are unbeaten in Spain’s top flight since the start of December, with Xavi taking the team forward since returning to the club as head coach last November.

Ancelotti’s side are chasing a league and Champions League double this season, and the club will take on Chelsea in the quarter-finals of the European Cup, with the first leg due to take place at Stamford Bridge on April 6 before the return fixture at Bernabeu on April 12. Real Madrid have won each of their last four matches in Spain’s top flight, including a 3-0 victory at Mallorca on Monday night, with Vinicius Junior and Karim Benzema on the scoresheet at Visit Mallorca Estadi.

As well as a 10-point advantage over Sevilla, Los Blancos are 15 clear of both Barcelona and Atletico Madrid, although the Catalan side have a match in hand and will certainly believe that they are capable of catching Sevilla, while Atletico will also be eyeing the position directly behind their capital rivals. Real Madrid have the best home record in La Liga this season, winning 10 and drawing four of their 14 matches to collect 34 points, while they have won each of their last four league games with Barcelona, including a 2-1 success at Camp Nou earlier this season.

While Real Madrid have not been in action since Monday, Barcelona played on Thursday evening in Turkey, recording a 2-1 win over Galatasaray to book their spot in the quarter-finals of the Europa League, where they will take on Eintracht Frankfurt for a position in the semi-finals. Xavi’s side are entering a huge period of their season, with their next two in the league coming against Real Madrid and Sevilla before travelling to Frankfurt for the first leg of their last-eight affair. There is no getting away from the fact that it has been a tough season for Blaugrana but lifting the Europa League trophy and claiming second spot in La Liga would be seen as a success ahead of what is expected to be a busy summer transfer window.

One of the biggest fixtures of the La Liga calendar will go down on Sunday night at the Santiago Bernabeu, as leaders Real Madrid play hosts to bitter rivals Barcelona in Matchweek 29.

Real Madrid are sitting comfortably at the top of the La Liga standings and look all set to lift the crown come the end of the season. Carlo Ancelotti’s side have a ten-point lead over second-placed Sevilla with ten games left to be played. Los Blancos are currently on a five-game winning run across all competitions, most recently defeating RCD Mallorca 3-0.

Barcelona are battling Atletico Madrid for a third-place finish. Currently fourth in the table after the Rojiblancos’ 1-0 win over Rayo Vallecano on Saturday, the Catalans are three points behind them with two games in hand. With Sevilla only five points ahead, a second-place finish could also be on the cards. Xavi’s men are on an 11-game unbeaten run in all competitions and beat Galatasaray 2-1 in their last game in the UEFA Europa League to qualify for the quarterfinal.

The big blow for Real Madrid heading into the game comes from the absence of star striker Karim Benzema. The leading goalscorer in La Liga will miss out due to a leg injury. Ferland Mendy is also set to miss out for the home team, which will be another concern for manager Carlo Ancelotti.

The Italian tactician is expected to set up his side in the usual 4-3-3 formation in front of goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois. Dani Carvajal, Eder Militao and David Alaba, who scored in the reverse fixture, will hold their places in the defensive line. Mendy’s absence should pave the way for Nacho to start at left-back.

Casemiro is a guaranteed starter at the base of the three-man midfield unit, where he will need to keep a close eye on the in-form Pedri. Toni Kroos and Luka Modric are expected to take up the remaining two slots in the centre of the park and could have to do some defensive work to help Casemiro against the threat of Pedri and Frenkie de Jong.

Marco Asensio and Rodrygo Goes will be vying for the right wing berth. Although the Spaniard has scored some vital goals in recent weeks, the latter should get the nod due to his superior work rate and link-up play. Vinicius Junior, meanwhile, is a certainty on the left flank and will have added responsibility on his shoulders in the absence of Karim Benzema.

Luka Jovic and Mariano Diaz would be the natural options to replace the Frenchman in the centre-forward role, but Ancelotti has used a false-nine in his absence in the past. It may well turn out to be the case again on Sunday night, with Asensio likely to be deployed centrally, while Isco is also an option.

Gerard Pique, who was taken off with a knock in midweek, has been included in the squad by Xavi and should start at the heart of the Barcelona backline against Real Madrid. He will likely be partnered by Ronald Araujo, who is set to return to the side after being left out of the starting XI in the last couple of games. Dani Alves and Jordi Alba should occupy the full-back slots.

Captain Sergio Busquets will anchor the midfield for the visiting side. He will have additional support against potential counter-attacks from Alves, who will frequently drop into the central midfield positions. Frenkie de Jong and Pedri will provide the forward thrust and creativity from the middle of the park for the Blaugrana.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who has scored seven goals in his last seven appearances for Barcelona in all competitions, should get the nod in the No. 9 role. January signing Ferran Torres should slot in on the left flank while Ousmane Dembele, who has been in explosive form of late, should start ahead of Adama Traore on the right.

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