Fierce rivals Real Madrid (9-4-2, 31 points) and FC Barcelona (13-3-0, 42 points) are set to meet in a 2017-2018 La Liga season game on Saturday at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium to settle this year’s final El Clasico match.
Start Time And Streaming Info
The game starts at 7 a.m. ET. It can be viewed live online via FuboTV.
Los Blancos have uncharacteristically struggled this season with only 31 points in 15 games so far. The team is currently in the fourth spot of the Spanish top-flight table, 11 points below league leaders Barcelona and five points and three points behind second and third-place squads Atletico Madrid and Valencia respectively.
Despite winning his fifth Ballon d’Or trophy earlier this month, Cristiano Ronaldo is evidently struggling to find his goals in La Liga this season as well. The Portugal national team captain has only scored four goals in 11 appearances this season, something which is highly uncanny for his standards.
Real has only won three of their last six matches, but are coming off a dominating 5-0 victory over Sevilla also at the Bernabeu on December 9. Ronaldo scored two goals at that time, while Nacho, Toni Kroos, and Achraf Hakimi contributed one goal apiece.
Gareth Bale is back for head coach Zinedine Zidane but is foreseen as a substitute in this match against the Catalan giants. Karim Benzema is expected to accompany Ronaldo up front for the capital city squad.
As expected, Lionel Messi and his band are leading La Liga right now and have yet to concede a single loss so far this season. Barca appears to be slowing down recently with two draws in their last six assignments.
However, their most recent La Liga fixture ended in a 4-0 demolition of bottom-three squad Deportivo La Coruna at the Camp Nou last Sunday. Luis Suarez and Paulinho both had braces to lead head coach Ernesto Valverde’s men as Messi took a day off from scoring.
Messi remains to be the league’s top scorer after 17 matchdays, though. The Argentine forward has 14 goals in 16 appearances so far and also has five assists, per BBC Sport.
Several players are injured for the Blaugrana and are doubtful to suit up for this event, namely Jordi Alba, Arda Turan, Samuel Umtiti, Paco Alcacer, Gerard Deulofeu, and Rafinha. Team captain Andres Iniesta would not play the full 90 minutes, the Daily Express reported.
Here is the potential starting XI for both sides via the Evening Standard:
Real Madrid starting lineup (4-3-1-2 formation): Navas; Carvajal, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo; Casemiro, Kroos, Modric; Isco; Benzema, Ronaldo.
Barcelona starting lineup (4-3-1-2 formation): Ter Stegen; Roberto, Pique, Vermaelen, Alba; Rakitic, Iniesta, Busquets; Paulinho; Messi, Suarez.
Here are the odds, per Goal:
Real Madrid – 23/20
Barcelona – 11/5
Draw – 11/4