Match Today || Barcelona vs Real Madrid Team News, Channel And Odds
Date and Time: March 20th, 9:00 PM CET
Venue: Santiago Bernabeu
Competition: La Liga
Referee: Juan Martinez Munuera
For decades, El Clasico was considered one of the most evenly matched contests in Europe. Both Barcelona and Real Madrid have had their fluctuations in form and strength, but the spoils have largely been shared by the two Spanish giants.
However, the equilibrium was disturbed in the past two years.
Of the last five Clasico’s Barcelona have won none. Los Blancos have proven to be too hot to handle for the Catalans, as seen in the first meeting between the sides this season. Despite the game taking place at Camp Nou, Real Madrid came, saw, and conquered.
After five painful defeats to their arch-rivals, Barcelona finally seem to have a rhythm going for them. The team has found a direction under Xavi and the setup is coming together beautifully.
Aubameyang has made all the difference
It’s amazing what a quality striker can do. In a side that has struggled to find any sort of consistency in attack since Luis Suarez’s best days, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been the key to the attack, giving it a bite it lacked in a long time. The Gabon international only played 57 minutes in his first two games, which is understandable, taking some time to get fit and adjusted. But since then, he’s been superb and it’s a natural fit that feels like has been in existence for years now.
With Aubameyang penned in as the No. 9, both Ferran Torres and Adama Traore have quickly found their footing as well. Since joining the team in the winter transfer window, Ferran has four goals and three assists and continues to return to form. His positioning has largely been superb, his runs have been precise, and though he has missed his fair amount of chances, he’s been an impact player more often than not.
Adama, on the other hand, returns home to Barca. In a league not nearly as physical as England, the former Wolves star has used his speed and strength to his advantage, making defenses look silly time and time again. So far he’s recorded four assists, and it wouldn’t be a shock if that number is doubled by season’s end. And when you considering that would be for half a season, that’s some serious production.
Thibaut Courtois will start in goal at the Bernabeu as he looks to take his league clean sheet tally to 13. The Belgian averages 2.6 saves per game and will be key in neutralising the Blaugrana attack.
David Alaba was amongst the goalscorers when Real Madrid met Barcelona earlier this season and will be determined to pull off an equally prominent performance tomorrow. He will likely start at centre-back alongside Eder Militao who had a phenomenal game against PSG.
Daniel Carvajal is expected to start at right-back and will hope to end his poor run of form. In Mendy’s absence, Nacho may get the nod at left-back.
In midfield, Ancelotti will opt for the three musketeers. The combination of Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Casemiro never gets old and continues to defy all concepts of natural ageing. As they go up against Barcelona’s young midfield, they will look to dominate proceedings.