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Barcelona blows chance to move atop La Liga table, Real Madrid struggles again

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It wasn’t a good day for La Liga’s top two teams

After tough midweek games in the Champions League, Real Madrid and Barcelona returned to action on Sunday in La Liga, and the two talented teams looked nothing like themselves as Barca lost 4-3 at Celta Vigo and Real Madrid could only draw at home against Eibar 1-1, both blowing a chance to jump to the top of La Liga.

You may be thinking, “Wow, it must have been a long time since both Real Madrid and Barcelona failed to win on the same weekend.” Well, you would be wrong. That happened on Sept. 20 of this year.

It’s been a strange start to the season and on Sunday neither team was impressive.

Barca, who has had trouble lately with Celta Vigo and was without Lionel Messi due to injury, trailed 3-0 at the break and came back to cut it to 4-3 but could not win, also conceding an own goal via Jeremy Mathieu. It was sloppy and lacked discipline. Barcelona dominated possession and had 13 shots but the defense let the team down, failing to close down on the counter.

As for Real Madrid, it was an embarrassing result against a lowly Eibar squad, and Zinedine Zidane’s team has settled for a draw in the last four games over all competitions. The last time Real Madrid won a game was on Sept. 18 over Espanyol.

Let’s check the top half of the La Liga standings:

LA LIGA TABLE W D L GD PTS
Atletico Madrid 4 3 0 +12 15
Real Madrid 4 3 0 +9 15
Sevilla 4 2 1 +3 14
Barcelona 4 1 2 +12 13
Villarreal 3 4 0 +5 13

 

The results see Atletico Madrid lead La Liga with 15 points with a +12 goal differential, while Real Madrid has the same amount of points but a +9 goal differential. Barcelona is in fourth place with 13 points.

Now comes the international break, with each team hoping for their players to return healthy and for the teams to return to their winning ways in two weeks.

By Roger Gonzalez