It's clear that the Spanish FA isn't very happy with Barcelona's dominance. Not only are Real Madrid being helped in pretty much all their matches (including today), but a whole new trick was used to try and stop Barcelona.
The Catalans and the Spanish FA had reached an agreement to postpone the match until Sunday, due to the strike by Spanish Air Traffic Controllers. Four hours before the game, though, the Spanish FA informed Barcelona that the deal was off and they would have to play after all.
Barcelona were obviously revolted, but they had to travel to Pampelona anyway. An emergency plan was put into motion and Barcelona got there right before kickoff. The Spanish FA probably thought that this would make Barcelona drop points: they had had a tiresome 500km bus trip and were going up against a team which was undefeated at home. Certainly they wouldn't be able to win and Real Madrid would take first place again, right?
No. These lame tricks had no effect whatsoever. Barcelona did not play at their usual level, but they still steamrolled Osasuna 3-0, with Messi scoring two and assisting Pedro. Osasuna created some chances in the beginning of the match but, after that, it was all Barcelona. The same 11 that had dismantled Real Madrid now anihilated Osasuna.
Later, Real Madrid beat Valencia 2-0. Valencia were controlling the match and creating chances, but on the 70th minute Albelda was mysteriously sent off after the ball hit his... chest. Playing against 10, Real Madrid went on to win 2-0 and kept the 2-point difference at the top.
Pep's Dream Team has been in a fantastic form, winning their past eight legue matches with 31 goals scored. But three-peating won't be easy. The Spanish FA is creating an added challenge to the blaugrana outfit; so far Barcelona have survived all the tricks and remain atop of the table, but they must keep their focus in order not to be brought down.
Today's victory at Osasuna was a demonstration of power and strength.
However, the league is far from over. The referees will keep helping Real Madrid, which means that Barcelona must keep winning their matches, starting with next week's match against Real Sociedad. Fortunately, Guardiola and his men have always thrived on challenges and this time shouldn't be any different.
Before Real Sociedad, though, there's a Champions League match against Rubin Kazan on Tuesday. The first place in the group might be guaranteed, but Barcelona always play to win and Tuesday's match will be no exception. Especially since Rubin Kazan is the only side Guardiola has failed as a manager, on three (!) occasions!