Real Madrid need a late winner from Jose Callejon to beat Real Mallorca and ensure they continued with their amazing streak that has seen them win 3 fixtures since their infamous 3-1 home loss to Barcelona.
Madrid do not seem like letting go of the top spot at least for now and though their arch rivals Barca are yet to play, a win for the Catalans will only bring them to within 5 points of Madrid.
Barcelona prepare to face Real Betis today and with an injury hit squad, Pep Guardiola has been forced to use the club youth players through out the remaining period of the transfer window.
“Going to the market doesn’t guarantee anything. The players have to adapt, and there isn’t money.
“From the very beginning we designed a small squad because we believe in our youth program.” Guardiola said.
With two crunch Copa Del Rey fixtures against Madrid in a span of 7 days, Barcelona’s title hopes hang in the balance. With an injury list that reads sort of like a horror script, Guardiola is a very troubled man.
David Villa and Ibrahim Affelay and Andreu Fontas are all out with long term injuries. Add to that list Andres Iniesta who has an ankle injury and Pedro Rodriguez who has a leg injury and you start to see the gravity of the matter.
Moreover, Barca’s Brazilian defender Maxwell is now with French side PSG. Guardiola acknowledged the difficulties saying that they needed to win or else see the league slip away.
“If we don’t respond well in the league because of the ‘clasicos’ we will let the league slip away,”
“With a rival like Madrid, if we drop more points we won’t be champions.”
That said, it is starting to look like Madrid could be walking away with the league. Evrything seems to be falling into place for Mourinho and only a blunder, (which is very rare for Mourinho) could change their destiny.
I know it still a bit too early to writer off Barcelona, however, Madrid are hungry for success. I would not be surprised if they won the treble this season.
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