The La Liga title race is heating up this season, with Real Sociedad surprising topping the league table above Real Madrid in second place, and Barcelona hopelessly languishing in 9th spot.
La Liga title race heats up
With traditional title frontrunners Barcelona stuck in 9th place following a transitional period that saw Ronald Koeman sacked and Lionel Messi leaving the club for pastures new, the Catalans are not the powerhouse that they once used to be.
Eternal rivals Real Madrid have taken the opportunity to stake a claim for the title, but have found surprising league leaders Real Sociedad perched right above them.
However, with that being said, Madrid is only 1 point behind and has a game in hand that could take them to the top spot if they win.
La Liga disappointment of the season
Barcelona has recruited Sergio Aguero from Manchester City and Memphis Depay from Lyon, following their fiasco in tying down Lionel Messi to a new contract that saw their talisman leave for Paris St Germain.
However, their season could be summed up in the 3-3 draw against Celta Vigo, where they raced into a 3-0 lead at halftime, only to have that 3-goal buffer wiped out in the second half and ending up drawing the game 3-3.
It is fairly safe to say that this season’s La Liga title is Real Madrid’s to lose, with bookmakers placing them as heavy favorites to lift the historical trophy come next May.
Atletico Madrid, the party-poopers
Defending champions Atletico Madrid, who signed unwanted Barcelona striker Luis Suarez from Nou Camp after the latter was unceremoniously booted out of the club in unsavory circumstances by then-manager Ronald Koeman, actually have a good chance of retaining their title.
They didn’t lose any of their key players, they bolstered their ranks with the recruitment of Argentina’s unsung Copa America hero Rodrigo De Paul as well as Spanish forward Rafa Mir from Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Their attack has been boosted and the notoriously defensive Atletico Madrid should have no problems adding goals to their defensive tightness.
So who will win the title in the end?
My heart tells me that Atletico Madrid will complete sensational retention of their league title but my brain says Real Madrid has too much in the tank to falter.
With the Brazilian wonderkids Vinicius Jr and Rodrygo storming the flanks and providing ammunition for French dynamo Karim Benzema to bang in the goals, Madrid has one of the most compelling strike forces in Europe.
Despite losing central defender Raphael Varane to Manchester United and club captain Sergio Ramos to PSG (with the latter reunited with his rival Lionel Messi, only this time both are on the same side), Madrid was expected to falter defensively.
However, they have seen Eder Militao rising to the occasion and new defender David Alaba wiping away the memories of Sergio Ramos.
Real Madrid will be champions in May, I bet my house on it.