Phakaaathi Reporter
Football writer
2 minute read
1 Mar 2019
3:06 pm

El Clasico the highlight of an exciting LaLiga weekend

Phakaaathi Reporter

Saturday’s El Clasico between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona is the highlight of a weekend fixture list.

Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi controls the ball during the Spanish Copa del Rey (King's Cup) semi-final first leg against Real Madrid. AFP/LLUIS GENE

LaLiga leaders Barça travel to third-placed Real Madrid for the 178th playing of the historic fixture, with the eyes of football supporters all over the world once again focused on the Santiago Bernabeu.

Barça won 5-1 in the first El Clasico of the season back in October, when Luis Suarez stepped up with a hat-trick in the absence of injured Blaugrana captain Lionel Messi. However, a lot has changed on both sides since then, and new Blancos coach Santi Solari and exciting Brazilian starlet Vinicius Junior will be aiming for three points to throw open the LaLiga Santander title race.

The weekend’s LaLiga programme kicks off elsewhere in the Spanish capital on Friday evening at the Estadio de Vallecas, as 19th placed Rayo Vallecano look to end a four-game losing streak when hosting a Girona team whose form has improved lately with four points from their last six games.

Saturday’s action starts at the RCDE Stadium in the city of Barcelona, where Espanyol aim extend their four-game unbeaten LaLiga run against relegation battlers Real Valladolid who have only taken one point from their last four outings.

Saturday afternoon at the Estadio de la Ceramica has 18th placed Villarreal aiming for a second straight home victory when they welcome 6th placed Alaves, who last won away from home back in December.

Next up is bottom team Huesca, who have impressed lately at home taking on a Sevilla side which has lost their last four away LaLiga games, with last October’s first-ever meeting between the teams having ended with a tight 2-1 win for the Andalusians.

Sunday LaLiga Santander morning’s programme begins up north in the Basque country where Eibar, unbeaten in nine at Ipurua, face off against an RC Celta side who have just two wins away from home all season.

Two challengers for fourth place then meet down in Seville, as the talented but inconsistent Real Betis host a Getafe team expert at controlling games and who currently sit in the fourth and final qualifying spot for next year’s Champions League.

Sunday afternoon in San Sebastian sees Real Sociedad welcome Atletico de Madrid and their former player Antoine Griezmann to Anoeta. With Atletico going into the weekend in second place, Griezmann and his teammates will have watched the previous evening’s El Clasico with interest.

Sunday’s programme ends at Mestalla, with Valencia and Athletic Club meeting in a clash of two sides whose form has improved significantly recently, and both are still aiming for a fourth spot which remains very much up for grabs.

The LaLiga Santander weekend finishes back in Madrid on Monday night, where suburban side Leganes look to continue their excellent home record against a Levante side who have proved themselves to be very dangerous on the road.

 

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