Tuesday, May 18

Piqué squeezes for the Classic

  • The center-back has participated in the penultimate session before the visit to Valdebebas, although Koeman has already warned that he will not risk

  • LaLiga makes it official that Mateu Lahoz will be the referee of the match

the truth hour has arrived. El Clásico marks the start of the final sprint for the title. The Barça will return to be leader if it wins in Valdebebas. And Piqué does not want to miss it. The central defender, who was injured against Sevilla a month ago, is pressing to be the pulse against Madrid. This Thursday he participated in the penultimate training session before a crash that appears as a flying goal 10 bends from the end.

With Piqué the same situation is reproduced as against PSG. Then Ronald Koeman and he agreed that he would start three months later and without having played for a minute after his injury. His presence could not prevent the shipwreck after which the coach removed the three-center system from the attic with which Barça has regained defensive strength. Koeman preferred not to include either Piqué or Sergi Roberto on the list for Monday’s game against Valladolid. “We will not risk, not only for the Classic, but for any game,” he warned. He does not want more relapses in injuries like those suffered by both Araujo and less in the decisive stretch of the season.

If finally Koeman and the medical services convince him not to risk, he would have to watch the game from the stands of Valdebebas, like Sergio Ramos. It has been a rare season for the defensive pillars of Barça and Madrid in the last 15 years and they are weighed down this season by physical problems. The Andalusian center-back has six injuries this season, in which he had to undergo surgery on the external meniscus of his left knee and has only played half of the possible games (20 games out of 40 possible). He has only been able to play five more games than Piqué (15 games out of 44 possible). While the 34-year-old Barça player has renewed until 2024, the Madrid player ends his contract at the end of the season and, at 35, has not yet clarified where he will play next season.

Mateu Lahoz, the other Classic

It may interest you

Ramos is the one who has played the most Classics, 45, one more than Messi, and Piqué has 36. The one who will surely be on the Valdebebas pitch is Mateu lahoz, another classic of the Clásico, as he will lead his sixth fight between Madrid and Barça. The balance of the previous five is three white victories, one Barça and a draw.

Barça is played in a month and a half the season is played, starting with the next two games: the Classical and the Cup final. Two Saturdays that can shoot or stop short the growing climate of optimism that is breathed among the Barça fans that has gone from desolation and from glimpsing another blank season to dreaming of the double. After having cut 11 points from Atlético, the Catalans could once again lead this Saturday 23 days later, waiting for what Atlético would do on Sunday against Betis. The mattresses will not be able to count on Luis Suarez, who in addition to being sanctioned has been injured. A loss for Simeone as or even more sensitive than those of Ramos and Piqué for Koeman and Zidane in this decisive stretch of the season.


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