With less than one week to go in La Liga, Barcelona and Real Madrid stand alone atop the table. It’s no surprise, of course, but Real Madrid have always had a slight advantage when looking at the Spanish standings.
For the last month, Barcelona have kept pace with Madrid, all the while knowing that Madrid have a game in hand. That game was played Wednesday, and the result can swing the title race in Madrid’s favor.
Madrid were scheduled for a midweek clash with Celta Vigo, a team with a disappointing mid-table finish but a run to the Europa League semifinals on their resume. By taking care of business, they will be three points ahead of Barca heading into the final day of the season.
As they have all season, Madrid were paced by Ronaldo on Wednesday. CR7 scored in each half, leading Los Blancos to the critical victory. Ronaldo’s been extra effective in the final stretch of the season, scoring nine goals in the last 30 days across all competitions.
Barcelona will be behind on points entering Sunday, but they’ve already done the hard work. In La Liga, two-team tiebreakers are determined by goal differential in the team’s two fixtures. Thanks to Messi’s late winner in April, Barcelona have the tiebreaker advantage. If Barcelona wins on Sunday and Madrid loses, Barca can sneak in and take the crown on the season’s final day.
While it’s plausible, it doesn’t seem likely. Madrid have been scorching hot to end the season, and look to ride the momentum into a second straight Champions League final. They finish the season against mid-table Malaga, who they defeated 2-1 earlier this season.