Beware the wounded animal. FC Barcelona enter tonight's Clasico as favourites following Real Madrid's recent downturn in form, a fact that is encouraging many Cules to make increasingly bold and/or arrogant predictions for the match ahead. A repeat of the Manita isn't impossible, yet to suggest it's probable? It doesn't make sense -- Real Madrid remain one of the best sides in football and this match will be anything but a walk in the park.
Quite the opposite; Los Blancos have had our number in the past few Clasicos and while that may be a change from the trend displayed over the past couple of years, that's the only form guide we should be concerning ourself with. After all, Real Madrid won't be facing FC Schalke 04 again; they're facing FC Barcelona and we represent an entirely different proposition. Different strengths, different weaknesses -- who knows? Maybe our strengths and weaknesses will still play into Carlo Ancelotti's hands?
Or maybe, just maybe, our confidence is well-placed. We can beat Real Madrid and if we were ever going to do it, it would be now. Lionel Messi is playing like a man possessed. Luis Suarez has found form. Andres Iniesta and Ivan Rakitic have formed a formidable midfield partnership, while our defense ranks amongst the best in Europe. All the factors we need to grab a win are on our side: can we take advantage and extend our lead at the top of La Liga?
Predict the score of tonight's El Clasico by commenting with your prediction below. Best of luck!
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