April 11th is D-Day in the Spanish Premier Division. Real Madrid and Barca face-off–most likely–for the league title. There is no competition otherwise and the two teams essentially have the same number of points so it’s all about keeping up. If you read the LaLiga table you’ll see that Barca is 3 points up on Real Madrid–only because Barca played and won yesterday and Real plays today. It would be pretty simple to surmise that with no other competition both of these teams can win all of their remaining matches except one–their showdown on April 11th.
The script should go something like this:
Real beats Atletico–Barca beats Bilbao–Real beats Racing–Barca and Real settle the score. After that it HAS to stay the same or the winner of the Aprill 11th “duel to the death” wasted their win from the 11th. Check it out:
Real beats Almeria–Barca beats Coruna–Real beats Valencia–Barca beats Espanyol–Real beats Zaragoza–Barca beats Xerez–etc.
This keeps the rest of the season interesting because at any time one of these teams could lose a match they shouldn’t and reshuffle the deck. If one of them takes a loss or a draw then the margin becomes nearly insurmountable if the other doesn’t lose. That’s how important matches against inferior teams are.
However, you also have to consider that every team in Spain is gunning for these two because everyone else’s chances of success have been dashed AND Valencia, Mallorca, and Sevilla fighting for spots in the Champion’s League next season. Even the idea of getting a chance at the European Championship is enough to make the 3rd-5th place teams go nuts at the end of the season.
We could say the same about teams that face relegation, but that just isn’t the same–when you’re defeated you probably can’t pull one out against killers like Barca and Real Madrid.
Let’s hope they keep it tight so some of these matches matter–actually, a reshuffle would be fun too!