The League enters this weekend in combustion. In its last third, the fight for the title appears tighter than projected by the two less games that Atlético accumulated compared to Barcelona and Real Madrid. A draw and a defeat with Levante (1-1 and 0-2), another two even against Celta (2-2) and Madrid (1-1), and the feeling that Simeone’s are one less team forceful in the areas of the one who finished the first round with 50 points, they have fueled the dispute for the conquest of the title. On Wednesday, after the rojiblancos’ hurried victory over Athletic (2-1), Atlético established the difference with Barcelona by six points and with Real Madrid by eight. A considerable margin still, which maintains the condition of favorites of the rojiblancos.
The three candidates are already on par in terms of games played. Atlético depends on itself and has the advantage of forbidden to fail weighing on the heads of his pursuers. He can allow himself two defeats compared to Barcelona, with whom he has pending the visit to Camp Nou on matchday 35. It also plays in their favor that the Catalans and madridistas have a direct confrontation at Alfredo Di Stéfano on matchday 30.
Against the rojiblancos the rise of the Catalans emerges. Barcelona has not only added 28 of the last 30 possible points, but has also experienced a notable improvement in the game that makes it the most threatening rival for the rojiblancos by football and by distance in the table. In addition, having been eliminated from the Champions League, only the final of the Copa del Rey against Athletic on April 17 will alter the relaxation of playing one game a week for Barça. Atlético has yet to decide with Chelsea, next Wednesday in London, if the European competition will distract them from their race to win the championship.
For Madrid, Atlético’s triumph against Athletic has detracted from the point they obtained in the derby. Eight points with 12 rounds left leaves him with very little margin for error. You need to win almost everything. The Madridistas are also waiting to see if they will have to combine European efforts, something that seems likely because they host Atalanta on Tuesday with the 0-1 first leg of the round of 16 in their favor.
It is Madrid that will open the curtain on this sprint final for the title that encompasses the big three and questions the duopoly almost always. He will do it this Saturday against Elche (16.15, Movistar LaLiga), a rival immersed in the fight not to descend and improved since the arrival of Fran Escrivá. Zidane’s men have the opportunity to put pressure on Atlético. Simeone’s team is also in action this Saturday. He will do it at the Alfonso Pérez Coliseum, against Getafe (21.00, Movistar LaLiga), another team immersed in the fight not to go down. The same goal as that of Huesca, Barcelona’s rival on Monday at the Camp Nou.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.