Spanish champions FC Barcelona are set to lock horns with nearest rivals Atletico Madrid in a top of the table clash in La Liga at the Camp Nou.

Both teams head into Saturday’s much awaited heavyweight match up level on points with 48 apiece. FC Barcelona, though, currently sit atop the La Liga table because of a better head to head record against Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid. The Catalans came away with all 3 points when the two teams clashed earlier in the season at the Vicente Calderon courtesy of goals from the indomitable duo Neymar and Lionel Messi.

Furthermore, FC Barcelona have a game in hand (against Sporting Gijon) over all the other teams below them in La Liga on account of their participation in the FIFA Club World Cup in December last year. With an extra match still to play, a win for FC Barcelona on Saturday will take them 3 points clear of the Los Rojiblancos and atleast 4 clear of bitter rivals Real Madrid — a sizeable lead at this juncture of the season.

However, Saturday’s blockbuster clash between two of Spain’s most fabled football clubs isn’t just about one-upmanship. It is a clash of styles  — a conflict of ideologies — a battle of philosophies between two of the greatest football thinkers of our generation. The weekend’s match up between FC Barcelona and Atletico Madrid will witness the league’s deadliest attack lock horns with its measliest defence.

All Out Attack the Mantra for Luis Enrique

Although Real Madrid have scored 6 more goals than FC Barcelona this season, the latter have undoubtedly been the most feared opponent in the league this season. Although they currently sit atop the La Liga table, Luis Enrique and his FC Barcelona side have been forced to overcome major obstacles in the first half of the season.

Lionel Messi was out of action for a couple of months for the Blaugrana through an ankle injury suffered against Las Palmas in late September. A transfer ban imposed by FIFA meant that Luis Enrique was unable to reinforce his treble winning squad in the summer. Finally, a tough fixture list meant that FC Barcelona had to play most of the so called tough teams in the league (Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Valencia, Sevilla) away from home in the first half of the season.

Messisuarezneymar

However, not only were the Catalans able to cope with these obstacles, they were able to do so by playing some of the most scintillating football ever witnessed on a pitch. The sheer brilliance of Lionel Messi, clever trickery of Neymar Jr. and the relentless industry of Luis Suarez have left opposition defenders gasping for air. A 3-1 victory over Athletic Bilbao in the Copa Del Rey in midweek extended FC Barcelona’s unbeaten streak to 25 matches in all competitions.

Luis Enrique’s men will be hoping to extend that streak to 26 by registering an emphatic win over their nearest title rivals on Saturday.

The sponsor of this article is the trusted football Testosterone Cypionate Store – Stero Market.

Defensive Resilience the key for Simeone

With a mere 8 goals conceded in 21 league matches this season, Atletico Madrid have the best defensive record among all the teams in Europe’s top 5 leagues (Spain, England, Italy, France, Germany). Atletico Madrid’s impenetrable backline led by Uruguayan national team captain Diego Godin has catapulted the capital club to 2nd place in the La Liga table.

Central defender Jose Jimenez and goalkeeper Jan Oblak, the pair of whom replaced Juan Miranda and Thibaut Courtois in the Atletico defence, have been a revelation this season. While Diego Godin has been as imperious as ever, the return of Felipe Luis from Chelsea at the beginning of the season has re-energized the club’s back four.

Atletico Madrid vs Levante UD

However, it is the Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone, who has been the chief architect of his team’s defensive resilience. The character and belief instilled into the Los Rojiblancos squad by Diego Simeone since his arrival in 2011 has transformed the fortunes of Atletico de Madrid. Simeone’s tactical mastery is not just restricted to the Atletico defence.

French International Antoine Griezmann, who has been a revelation for Atletico Madrid this season, has flourished under the watchful gaze of Simeone. The former Real Sociedad man has scored more than a third of the club’s league goals this season. Griezmann’s scintillating displays have propelled Atletico to offer him a new contract this January with a rumoured by out clause of €100m.

Apart from the mercurial Frenchman, Simeone’s inspired substitutions have seen his team claim more points than any team in the league this season. Saúl Ñíguez, Yannick Ferreira Carrasco, Luciano Vietto and Fernando Torres have made important contributions off the bench this season.

The triumph of one philosophy over another at the Camp Nou on Saturday may as well end up determining the destination of the La Liga trophy come the end of the season.

Yes, the smartest thing to do is to best phone tracking app change the course of one or more aircraft

Leave A Comment...

*