Can Barcelona overhaul Real Madrid?
May 4th, 2010 by Adam Davies
Barcelona manager Josep Guardiola has done well to prolong the Spanish title race after a difficult week for his side. Inter Milan knocked his side out of the UEFA Champions League 3-2 on aggregate, and though Barcelona were undoubtedly rocked by the result, they responded in emphatic fashion. A 4-1 victory at Villarreal is impressive regardless of the circumstances, and they remain one point ahead of Real Madrid in La Liga’s standings.
Both Barcelona and Real Madrid have dropped points in just one home match each all season, and with Barca losing just once on the road they are undoubtedly the favourites for the title. Real Madrid will have to hope that their Catalan rivals drop points against either Tenerife, Real Valladolid or Sevilla if they are to avoid a trophyless season.
Only four teams have shut out Barcelona’s magnificent attack of Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta, Zlatan Ibrahimovic et al this season: third placed Valencia, city rivals Espanyol, Internazionale (once in the Champions League Group Stage, but not in their two knockout ties), as well as, bizarrely, Rubin Kazan.
Can Tenerife, Valladolid or Sevilla do it? It looks unlikely. Barcelona won each of the reverse fixtures earlier in the season, scoring twelve goals and conceding none in the process; a clear illustration of their sublime footballing prowess.