The only team with a real shot at stopping Barcelona from winning their fourth La Liga title in five seasons is Atletico Madrid. Atletico Madrid are seven points behind Barca with a dozen games to play, but even they know their chances of catching the defending champions are long. Barcelona have not been as overpowering as we have seen in recent seasons, yet they have been miles ahead of the field in terms of their goal scoring prowess. The Blaugrana are averaging nearly a goal per game more than any other team in La Liga, and that makes them very tough to beat.
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Athletic Bilbao -0.5 vs. Espanyol Barcelona, O/U 2 and 2.5
It looks like the most famous Basque club in Spain has salvaged their season. Athletic Bilbao had major issues at the start of this campaign following their sale of Kepa to Chelsea, and for a time it looked like they may be headed to the Segunda Division after winning just one of their first 14 games. They turned their season around in mid-December though and have been one of the hottest teams in Spain since that point. Bilbao are 6-4-2 over their last 12 games and are now firmly in the middle of the table. Bilbao should extend their lead against a freefalling Espanyol side on Friday.
- FC Barcelona -2 and -2.5 vs. Rayo Vallecano, O/U 3.5
- Atletico Madrid -1 and -1.5 vs. CD Leganes, O/U 2 and 2.5
- Getafe CF -0.5 and -1 vs. SD Huesca, O/U 2 and 2.5
- Deportivo Alaves PK -105 vs. SD Eibar, O/U 2
Most people will have their attention on Barcelona and Atletico Madrid on Saturday, but I’ll be watching the other two games. Getafe and Alaves are currently 4th and 5th in the table, and both clubs are out to qualify for the Champions League for the first time in their history. Getafe are sitting on 42 points and Alaves have 40 points, but there are 10 other clubs that have between 30 and 37 points that are hoping these two teams fall.
Getafe look like the real deal, and I’ll be backing them here. Jaime Mata has tallied 10 goals and four assists over his last 13 matches with the club, and Real Valladolid must be kicking themselves after allowing him to move over to Getafe on a free transfer. The club has a +11 goal differential, and they should put away bottom of the table Huesca.
Alaves might be fool’s gold. They are fifth in the table, but they have been rather fortunate with a negative goal differential. That being said, Eibar are not the team to deal a damaging blow to their dream season. Eibar have the worst road record in the league, and they have scored 25 goals at home compared to just 9 on the road.
- Sevilla -0.5 and -1 vs. Real Sociedad, O/U 2.5 and 3
- Girona PK and +0.5 vs. Valencia, O/U 2 and 2.5
- UD Levante PK +101 vs. Villarreal, O/U 2.5 and 3
- Celta Vigo PK and -0.5 vs. Real Betis, O/U 2 and 2.5
- Real Valladolid +1 and +1.5 vs. Real Madrid, O/U 3 and 3.5
Sunday’s action features many of the biggest names in Spain with Sevilla, Valencia, Villarreal, and Real Madrid all taking the pitch. Villarreal are a team to keep an eye on here, as the oddsmakers continue to believe the Yellow Submarine will climb out of the relegation zone. They have secured a result in the majority of their matches, but they have drawn an incredible 11 times and have a league-low four wins. Villarreal must start winning if they hope to stay up.
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