Barcelona have the chance to eclipse Real Madrid at the top of La Liga if they beat Atletico Madrid at the Vicente Calderon. Barcelona have done exceptionally well to maintain the pressure on La Liga leaders Real Madrid when it looked as though they could run away with the title this season. The gap at the top of the table stands at just two points meaning Barca could go top themselves if they beat Atletico Madrid and Real slip up at Recreativo on Saturday. Frank Rijkaard’s side are unbeaten in their last eight La Liga matches, winning three out of their last four. They are in a strong position in the Champions league, having beaten Celtic 3-2 at Parkhead in the first leg and can afford to concentrate fully on the match at the Vicente Calderon. Atletico continue to pressurise the top three in La Liga and are five points adrift of third-placed Villarreal. However, they have lost their way a little in recent games, losing 3-1 at Osasuna and 2-1 at home to Athletic Bilbao in their last two league fixtures. Javier Aguirre’s side have also been eliminated from the UEFA Cup, after a 1-0 aggregate defeat against Bolton Wanderers. Barcelona beat Atletico 3-0 at the Nou Camp in October with Deco, Lionel Messi and Hernandez Xavi on target. Last season, they registered an astounding 6-0 victory at the Vicente Calderon towards the end of May when the title race entered the final stages. Lionel Messi (2), Gianluca Zambrotta, Samuel Eto’o, Ronaldinho and Andres Iniesta all scored that evening. Atletico have beaten Barca in four of the last 10 meetings at home but just twice in the last seven.
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