Welcome Back to TalkBarca. It’s time for El Classico, the time for Barcelona vs Real Madrid and we are here with the Match Preview. It is finally that time of the season when both of these teams go head to head, and show the world who is the best. El Classico is the biggest rivalry in club football, and considering the points table, there isn’t a better time for this game.
Both, Barca and Real Madrid have drawn their respective matches on the weekend. Now, this fixture is going to decide who goes on the top of the La Liga table. There is a lot to discuss tactically, so, without any delay, let’s start our Match Preview.
El Classico: Barcelona vs Real Madrid Match Preview
As usual, we will start our Match Preview with the kick off timings and then move on the squad list and expected starting lineups. However, in the Match Preview, we will discuss the lineups in much more depth as well as with a tactical point of view. So, let’s dive into it.
Kick Off TImings:
The Legendary El Classico will kick off at 08:00 PM as per local time which is obviously the best time for such an intense game. Alejandro Hernandez will be the Match Referee. You can check the kick off timings for your respective country in the following image:
The club issued the name of players for the Classico. These players are:
- Goalkeepers: Ter Stegen and Neto.
- Defenders: Semedo, Pique, Lenglet, Umtiti, Alba, and Roberto.
- Midfielders: Busquets, Rakitic, De Jong, Alena, and Vidal.
- Forwards: Messi, Suarez, Griezmann, Ansu Fati, and Carlos Perez.
Barcelona vs Real Madrid Expected Lineup:
Ter Stegen is the most obvious choice to start in goal. The German has been a vital part of Barcelona’s success and has been living up to the mark for quite some time now. With 4 Clean sheets and 2 Assists and 3 saves per game, he has been there for Barca week in week out. Ter Stegen has excellent reflexes and perfect passing sense. He has a great coordination ability with his defenders too. It is going to be a huge job for him to stop the likes of Benzema, Rodrygo, Bale, Luka Jovic but we are sure that once again he is going to live up to our expectations.
We know Ter Stegen has the ability to stay calm under pressure. He also knows how to face the best of attackers, and he certainly needs to do that in this game because Karim Benzema is going to trouble him a lot. Benzema is the striker who makes a lot of deep runs and can hurt any defense with his quick movements. Therefore, Ter Stegen has to keep his eyes open all the time.
Gerrard Pique is going to lead our defense. Pique loves to play against Real Madrid, and on his day he can be the toughest defender to face. In fact, he has been a nightmare for Real Madrid’s attackers time and time again. It is going to be a great battle between Pique and Benzema. Lucas Vazquez is not available for this game. So, Madrid can use Luca Modric who is also a great attacking midfielder and is going to look for spaces in our defense. Toni Kroos is one of the most lethal midfielders outside the box. Therefore, our Center Backs have a huge responsibility on their shoulders.
His Backline partner is going to be the Frenchman Clement Lenglet. He came from Sevilla and now has become a vital part of Barcelona lineup. He has a wonderful man-marking sense and makes world-class clearances. Lenglet certainly has to do that against the likes of Rodrygo and Isco. He played El Classico last year and stood firm for the team. The most important part of Lenglet’s game is that he can also play long balls to initiate a threatening attack out of nowhere.
With the return of Semedo, it’s going to be very tough to predict who is going to start on the Right Back slot. In normal matches, I would have opted for Semedo 9 times out of 10. However, in this particular scenario, I would go ahead with Sergio Roberto. First of all, Roberto has benn in great form recently. Secondly, Real Madrid does not have any natural wide player on the right side. Most importantly, Marcelo is also unavailable for this fixture. So, this is going to be the vulnerable side for Real Madrid and we have to play Roberto as he is very attack-oriented and can run up and down the wing all day long.
Another reason to choose Roberto in our starting lineup is that he can combine with Messi to create dangerous chances. Messi is going to operate from the Right Wing. However, as we all know, he is going to drift into the center and when he does that, there would a lot of dream space for Roberto on the right flank. Having Roberto in our lineup is means we will have more players in the opposition area which ultimately means a higher goal threat.
Jordi Alba is going to start on the Left Back. We really don’t need to emphasize much on his attacking prowess and sheer pace. He has the ability to carry the ball in the final third and make threatening passes in the box. However, in this game, Alba will have to do much more than attack. Real Madrid are going to initiate most of their attacks from Right Wing. Therefore, Alba will have to be cautious of the Rodrygo and the threat he poses in the counter-attack. Jordi Alba will also have to rely on our midfielders to fill up the void he leaves behind when he is on the attack because we cannot give space to Madrid.
Sergio Busquests is the obvious starter in the CDM role. He is well known for his vision, creativity, and how sharp he is in defending. He has been doing it in front of the Madrid team for years now, and his experience is going to be a huge benefit for the team. Obviously, he is going to move ahead, and try to block the combination between Kroos and Modric/Isco.
Furthermore, he is going to drop down into the defense to deal with the threat of Benzema. With Alba and Roberto as our fullbacks, we will most likely see Busquets moving into the defense to make it back 3 when our fullbacks go on an attack. Madrid knows how important this guy is for us, and they are going to try their best to keep him silent. However, he has been among our most consistent performers, and keeping him shut is easier said than done.
Frenkie De Jong destroyed the Madrid in UEFA Champions League while representing Ajax is now set to make his debut El Classico for Barcelona. Frenkie prefers the CDM role too, but, is most likely going to play a much attack-oriented role. De Jong has the ability to play killer passes, and he has the legs to run up and down the pitch to defend and attack. Dribbling is one of the most significant qualities of De Jong as he can find his way out of a tough situation. He can surely lead Barca to glory in the coming years.
Ivan Rakitic is the guy who has a vast experience in the EL Classicos and has scored some World Class goals in this competition. Arthur Melo is injured, and therefore, Rakitic is going to continue with his starting role in the squad. He has great vision in giving long balls, and obviously, good shooting skills too. The best part about Rakitic in this fixture is particularly the experience he has. Playing in an El Classico is now casual for him and he is not going to feel much pressure.
Our attackers have a huge responsibility in the El Classico. Lionel Messi is going to lead our attack, who is a nightmare for any defender. He is the top scorer of the El Classico and the guy who just got his 6th Pichichi and De Stefano trophy. Messi is really used to the El Classico conditions, and certainly, has no pressure. We know that Messi is going to play centrally, and is often going to come across Ramos. Beating him won’t be a problem for him. However, he is surely going to need his fellow attackers really active in making movements. Our front three really need to combine in order to create a huge impact.
Griezmann is going to operate from the other side of the wing. Griezmann is going to make his debut in the El Classico. Surely, this is not the first time he is facing Real Madrid, but, the Classico pressure is always different. He has to be really quick with his movements and combine with Jordi Alba for overlapping runs to shut down Carvajahal. Overall, this is going to be a great outing for him.
Luis Suarez is going to start as the Central Striker. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that Luis Suarez simply lives for El Classicos. He scored a hattrick last time Barcelona met Real Madrid at Camp Nou. Messi wasn’t available in that fixture. Therefore, he showed that he has the ability to carry Barcelona on his shoulders. He is probably the Best striker Barca have had in a long long time. With this dangerous trio, Barca can win comfortably at home.
Ansu Fati and Carles Perez are going to be on the bench and will be waiting for there opportunities to shine in there first ever El Classico. They both are great talents and have great pace authority in their game. Ansu Fati is too good for a 17 years old player and he has already scored, assisted, and won points for Barca this season.
Neto is going to be sitting on the bench for his first-ever El Classico. He may be called to play one in the future, but, tomorrow might not be that day. He is a wonderful Goalkeeper and has European experience too. We all hope whenever he gets the chance he’s there to deliver a great performance.
Vidal will also be there on the bench and will surely come in the second half for an instant impact and physicality. Carlos Alena will be on the bench as well for this fixture. I don’t think, he will get a chance in this game unless the game really demands it. Umtiti and Semedo will also be there on the bench to provide defensive cover if needed.
Barcelona vs Real Madrid – Score Prediction:
El Classicos are always tough to predict and with a game so intense in terms of getting 3 points, it’s really tough to call a guess the final scoreline. However, one thing is certain, we are going to see goals from both sides. I have faith in my side and I am going for a comfortable win with a 3-1 scoreline. Let’s hope Valverde doesn’t disappoint us with his tactics in Barcelona vs Real Madrid.
Well, that’s all for the Match Preview of Barcelona vs Real Madrid (The El Classico). What are your thoughts on this fixture and our Match Preview? Do you think we can dominate Real Madrid? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below. We will be back with the Match Review right after the game. Until then, Visca El Barca!