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The race for La Liga 

Ayush Harsh
769   //    30 Mar 2018, 14:29 IST

FC Barcelona v RCD Espanyol - La Liga
FC Barcelona v RCD Espanyol - La Liga

Now that the international break is over, players are returning to their clubs and their focus will be on the silverware.

Many are predicting that the race will be won by Barcelona because of their form throughout the season, because of which they're at the top with 75 points and 11 points clear from their 2nd place opponents Atletico and 15 points clear from their arch nemesis Real Madrid.

One can never be sure of anything as in this game the tides can quickly turn. But as the La Liga season nears its end, many clubs especially Atletico and Real want Barcelona to get nervous and lose few games. As we all know from experience that tougher the stage is better they perform, they have always lived up to their reputation.

Injury problems are piling up on the league leaders. Sergio Busquets suffered a serious injury against Chelsea and he won't be available for their league game. Even though Messi was back in training, he and Ter Stegen still face fitness issues and keeping in mind that the champions league game against Roma is not far away they can be ruled out from the next match against Sevilla meanwhile Lucas Digne will be out for 3 weeks due to a thigh injury.

While many Barcelona players have performed well in their international matches, the absence of players like Messi, Busquets and Ter Stegen may present an opportunity to Sevilla who will be looking to use this situation to its full advantage and end their impressive 32 games unbeaten run.

A loss for Barcelona may not hamper their position as the leader's but it will open up the race once for the title once again, whereas a win will make their claim even stronger.

With only 9 games remaining, Atletico Madrid will be looking to grab this opportunity and close the gap against Barcelona when they play Deportivo. While their star player Antoine Griezmann will be one of the key players to look out this transfer season as he has been heavily linked to giant's like Barcelona and Manchester United who are willing to pay somewhere between €200 m and €300 m, but his future still remains undecided.

As for Real Madrid, if they lose their next match against Las Palmas, they'll slip down to the 4th position. While a win may not change things drastically for them they can try to maintain 3rd place. Ronaldo seems to have regained his form in the league, he also played exceptionally well in the friendly match against Egypt by scoring 2 goals and making sure his team comes out on the winning side. But with the Portuguese missing the match against Las Palmas to be in prime shape for the upcoming champions league match, his teammates will have to step up and earn those 3 points now.

The upcoming matches on Matchday 30 will decide the fate of the top 3 contenders Barcelona, Atletico and Real.

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Ayush Harsh
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