Real Madrid v Barcelona: Barca slight favourites for El Classico semifinal

Real Madrid v Barcelona: Barca slight favourites for El Classico semifinal

Real Madrid v Barcelona
Copa del Rey
Santiago Bernabeu Stadium, Madrid, Spain
Wednesday 30 January, 2013
20:00 GMT

Real Madrid host Barcelona for the first leg of this El Classico double header in the Copa del Rey. Real Madrid will be going all out to gain a big advantage ahead of the second leg at the Nou Camp, notoriously one of the most difficult places to go and get a result in the world.

Real Madrid Preview

Real Madrid will be extremely confident heading into this game after beating Valencia 3-1 over two legs in their quarter final.

The odds at should provide good value on the home team who also come off the back of a 4-0 win in the league. Real Madrid have not lost a home league game this season.

Injuries and Suspensions

Real Madrid are missing only two key players for this match: goalkeeper Iker Casillas and central defender Pepe. Casillas is set for a longer spell out of the side and Real Madrid have no worries in terms of suspensions ahead of this match.

Back Real Madrid to win the match at competitive odds of 2.90 with bwin.

Barcelona Preview

Barcelona go into this game on the back of a 5-1 home win against Osasuna. They were challenged by Malaga in the quarter-finals who managed to net four goals but Barca got into the last four by scoring six.

They have a superb away record this season, dropping points in only one away game which was a defeat to Real Sociedad.

Injuries and Suspensions

Barcelona have also been blessed in terms of injuries and suspensions. Sergi Roberto will not feature in place of any senior player as he remains out of first team action until the middle of February. Eric Abidal continues rehabilitation away from football and is unlikely to play again this season.

Barcelona are likely to be the slight favourites with bwin at at least 2.20 due to their form this season.

Real Madrid v Barcelona Statistics

Real Madrid endured a poor start to the season which has now left them with this competition and the Champions League as their realistic chances of silverware. Their complete record this season reads 13 wins, four draws and four defeats. Only Barcelona have scored more home league goals with 34 compared to their 32.

Barcelona look set for another La Liga title thanks to 19 wins, one draw and one defeat which no other team can get close to. They have scored a staggering 71 goals which is more than any other team in Spain and they will back themselves in any knock out situation.

Head to Head

The last time these two sides met in this competition was at the quarter-final stage of the 2011/2012 tournament. Barcelona won the first leg at Real Madrid 2-1 before a 2-2 draw at the Nou Camp. Real Madrid beat Barca 1-0 in the final of the 2010/2011 tournament.

Recent Form

Real Madrid have been in very good form this January winning all but two matches which ended in draws. Those draws came away at Osasuna and Valencia. They lost two matches in December, away at Celta Vigo and Malaga.

Barcelona have been in similarly good form winning all matches apart from one defeat away at Real Sociedad and a draw away at Malaga. December produced a near perfect record with the only blip being a 0-0 draw against Benfica in the Champions League.

Real Madrid v Barcelona Prediction

It’s always difficult to predict meetings between these sides, especially when they both have near fully fit squads to choose from. Barca will back themselves to build pressure over the 90 minutes but Real Madrid have to attack and try to take an advantage into the second leg.

Prediction: Real Madrid 1-1 Barcelona – use your £10 free bet from bwin on this result at odds of 5.20

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