Barca leads the La Liga table with 44 points closely followed by their rivals Madrid at 41 points. The Blaugarana maintain the lead after a hard fought 1-0 victory at Camp Nou against a defensive Getafe. Madrid keeps the pressure intact on points table after overcoming Valverde’s Bilbao at San Mames. Real Sociedad is closely following the Spanish giants at the top with an impressive run of results.
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Barca leads the league standings
Xavi’s Barca leads the title race at the end of match day 18 after a hard fought win against Getafe at Spotify Camp Nou. Xavi’s men were hit with the absence of Lewandowski and Ferran Torres at the front due to suspensions. Ansu Fati started as a striker with Raphinha and Dembele at wings. Frenkie De Jong and Araujo were rested for the fixture. Pedri scored the first and only goal of the match from an incredible pass by Raphinha. Getafe threatened to spoil the party at few occasions and was denied by Ter Stegan. It was the 13th clean sheet for Ter Stegan in 17th league appearance this season. The German is leading the race to win his first ever Zamora trophy.
Real Madrid had a difficult away trip to San Mames to face Ernesto Valverde’s Athletic Club. Valverde lost none of his last 7 managerial games against Madrid and the streak was brought to a halt by Ancelotti’s men. The Basque club were pressing hard but it was the Los Blancos who came out on top with goals from Benzema and Kroos. Bilbao have lost their second straight league game and are reeling at 8th spot. The victory kept Madrid just 3 points behind their arch rivals in the title race.
Four way battle for remaining European spots
With the league expected to go down the wire Barcelona and Real Madrid are the strong contenders for title with Real Sociedad being outside favourites apart from these two heavy weights. La Real are in a great form with 38 points from 18 games. The Basque club are comfortably placed ahead of Atletico Madrid, Villarreal and Real Betis in the points table. Atletico Madrid are finding their feet back in the league. With 31 points, Atletico is at 4th spot in the table. Villarreal is at 5th, trailing behind Rojiblancos only in goal difference. Real Betis takes the 6th and final European spot with 28 points. Osasuna, Athletic Club and Rayo are breathing under the neck of Betis with small margin of points gap. Barcelona, Real Madrid, Real Betis and Valencia have a game in hand after missing match day 17 due to Supercopa de Espana.
Sevilla are languishing at the bottom half of the table at 15th spot. They are just one point above relegation zone and need to get it right in the second half of the season to avoid major setback. Match day 19 lines up with some exciting fixtures where Madrid takes on Sociedad at Bernabeu, Villarreal face Rayo and Osasuna host Atletico Madrid. Girona faces Barcelona in the Catalan derby.