Barcelona looked like they were headed for a draw before Alexis Sanchez and Messi scored in the span of 10 minutes to hand the Catalans a much needed 4-2 win over Real Betis that reduced their deficit on Leaders Real Madrid to 5 points.
World Player of the year Lionel Messi scored a brace to bring his tally for the season to 19 goals, just 2 short of leading goal scorer Cristiano Ronaldo. The two are set to meet in Wednesday’s Copa Del Rey quarter final in Madrid in a battle of the titans.
So with 18 matches played, the La Liga title race is once again turning out to be a two horse race between Real Madrid and Barcelona.Third place Valencia is a massive 12 points behind Madrid while 4th placed Levante finish the top 4 teams in the league.
So looking at Wednesday’s fixture, it will be hard to predict an outright winner. Though Madrid will be playing at home, a win is not guaranteed. Barcelona proved this when they met at the Bernabeu last December and thrashed Les Merengues 3-1.
Barcelona on the other hand should not expect to get the same or an even better result. That said, attention will definitely be on the stars of the show Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
Former Madrid great Alfredo Di Stefano has offered his advice to Ronaldo who has lately endured criticism for his performances. According to the legend, Ronaldo could become a better player probably even the best in the history of the club, if learnt how to accept the criticism instead of reacting toward it.
“The whistles against Cristiano Ronaldo? The people in the crowd are the ones who pay, and they are always right,” Di Stefano said.
“If the spectators demand from the players that they do their utmost and score goals, the players shouldn’t question this. The fans are always right. If they whistle or jeer someone, it’s because they want him to be effective.”
Once again the Messi-Ronaldo debate is set to be ignited with Wednesday’s fixture. However, who will emerge victorious? I won’t give my predictions, we will just have to wait and see.
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