Sunday 8th May. 4PM. Live streaming available on Bet365
With two games to play, just one point separates the three giants of Spanish football, meaning it will almost certainly go to the wire. However, as it stands, Barcelona hold the advantage thanks to a superior head-to-head record, and the Blaugrana know that two wins will be enough to retain the crown.
A derby match against fierce rivals Espanyol certainly won’t be easy, though. Luis Enrique’s men certainly boast the superior quality, but anything can happen when local enemies collide, which should make this an absolute cracker.
And you can watch the action unfold live with Bet365. Will Barca do it? Here’s everything you need to know.
MSN Connection Will Be Key
Despite suffering a number of injuries between them, the world’s most formidable attacking trio have still managed to bag a colossal 83 goals in La Liga this season; if Barcelona do get over the finish line to lift the title, their impact will have been huge. Once again, Enrique will be looking to those stars for inspiration.
The trio have been instrumental in helping their side to 16 goals in three matches, and they’ll be eager to bring down the curtain on another season at the Camp Nou with a flurry of goals against their local rivals. Not only would it seal another crucial victory, but it’d also send a warning to the Madrid duo that they won’t be slipping up in next week’s final match at Granada.
Barcelona are more than three players, though. Enrique’s side is packed with talent all over the pitch, and the technicians of Andres Iniesta and Ivan Rakitic will look to dominate the play. Meanwhile, Gerard Pique should keep things calm at the back to reduce the Espanyol threat.
Should the hosts play to their potential, they’ll win with ease. However, that’s a lot easier said than done.
Can Espanyol Break Barca Hearts?
A win over Sevilla last Sunday means that Espanyol will be plying their trade in the top tier once again in 2016/17, but that won’t prevent Constantin Galca’s men from chasing a massive win against their far more illustrious rivals. Not least because it would almost certainly stop Barcelona from winning the title.
The lack of pressure could work in the away side’s favour too. Whether they go for a shock win or look to frustrate the hosts, a positive result would give their fans almost as much joy as staying up. Espanyol will need to be at their best defensively, but the firepower of Felipe Caicedo and Hernan Perez can give them a chance on the counter.
Espanyol don’t score many on the road, and tend to concede a lot too. However, that record can be thrown out of the window in the derby. They still face a huge uphill battle, but anything can happen over 90 minutes. If they do cause an upset, the two sets of Madrid fans would be eternally grateful too.
Whatever happens, it should be an absolutely absorbing contest. Do not miss it.
Barcelona v Espanyol Betting
The bookmakers think this is a formality, pricing Barcelona at 1/25 for the win while Bet365 make Espanyol the 40/1 outsider. Even the draw can be backed at 16/1, which suggest the game is over before a ball has been kicked. But anything could happen in a derby at this stage of the season.
That’s not to suggest that we think Barcelona will blow it, but there’s no value in such short odds. Instead, we’ll be looking to alternative markets, starting with an early goal.
Enrique’s men will be eager to settle the nerves early on, and breaking the deadlock should underline their dominance en route to a routine victory. Backing them to do it in 10 minutes is a risk, but it’s one worth taking. Back over 0.5 goals, though, as it’s the same price as a Barcelona win.
Lionel Messi and Neymar have been brilliant this term, but 2015/16 has been the year where Luis Suarez has cemented his place at the very top table of world superstars. If anyone is going to fire them to a big win at the Camp Nou, the Uruguayan has as good a chance as anyone.
Can he add another two goals to is tally? We certainly think so.