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Home » Analysis: Four Things To Look Out for in Spain’s Matchday 29

Analysis: Four Things To Look Out for in Spain’s Matchday 29

by Charlie Atkinson
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Matchday 29 in La Liga sees several clashes between sides battling to qualify for Europe next season and teams fighting to avoid the drop. Here are some things to keep an eye out for this weekend in Spain.

1 Injuries to limit Barcelona again?

Barcelona’s 4-0 defeat to Real Madrid and their 0-0 draw at home to Girona on Monday highlighted the importance of the injured quartet, Pedri, Ousmane Dembele, Andreas Christensen and Frenkie de Jong to Xavi Hernandez’s side, as well as showing the lack of depth in the squad.

None of the injured players are likely to be back for what could be a difficult visit to play Getafe, whose defeat last week to Real Sociedad was their first loss in five games.

Expect Getafe to play five across the back and close up in midfield and that will be very hard to break down for a jaded-looking Barca.

2 Real Madrid to continue rotations

Real Madrid’s 2-0 win at home to Chelsea in the Champions League on Wednesday night gave them a good advantage to take to London next week but leaves them with some work still to do in Stamford Bridge.

Carlo Ancelotti said he would use his league games to ensure that his squad stayed as sharp as possible.

That means we are likely to once again see players such as Lucas Vazquez, Dani Ceballos, Nacho Fernandez and Aurelian Tchouameni all start away to a Cadiz side, who after last weekend’s win away to Betis would probably view a draw as a decent result.

3 Lots at stake in the Basque derby

Athletic Club recovered from their Copa del Rey semifinal disappointment with a comfortable 2-1 win away to Espanyol last weekend and now entertain local rivals Real Sociedad in a match that is vital for both sides.

Athletic are five points off sixth place Betis and need to keep on winning to have a chance of returning to Europe after a five-year absence, while Real Sociedad are under pressure in fourth from Villarreal and Betis.

Basque derbies are usually close affairs and, with Athletic at times struggling to turn control into goals and Real Sociedad failing to score in three of their last five away matches, this is unlikely to be a high-scoring game, even if Athletic did beat ‘La Real’ 4-0 last season.

4 Massive game in Mestalla

The Basque derby will be tense, but the match between Valencia and Sevilla in the Mestalla Stadium promises to be a mixture of tension and trepidation for a meeting of two of Spain’s biggest clubs, who are both in danger of relegation.

Valencia’s defeat to Almeria last weekend dropped them into the bottom three and with their next four matches all against direct rivals for the drop, this looks like a decisive month.

There will be no Nico Gonzalez, Justin Kluivert or Thierry Correia for the vital match, while Sevilla, who seem to have adapted well to new coach, Jose Luis Mendilibar, are without suspended duo of Pape Gueye and Marcos Acuna and travel after a Europa League fightback to draw 2-2 in their tie against Manchester United. 

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