Barcelona vs Real Madrid – Primera
November 29, 2010 ás 16:52
Pick: Real Madrid AH +0,5 @ 1.79 in Pinnacle / Result: (5-0)
Barcelona keeps playing an impressive football, appealing and effective, with 10 victories, 1 draw and 1 defeat in the league, 31 in 36 possible points, guaranteed in the next round in the Champions League, with the 1st place. Even though, they’re at the same position as the last year at the same time, in the second place and a little behind Real, with one point difference.
Barcelona comes from 5 straight wins in all competitions, with an away overrun by 0-8 at Almeria in the past round, which lead to the firing of their opponents, and in the middle of the week they ruined Jesualdo Ferreira’s debut as Panathinaikos coach with a convincing away win by 0-3.
Messi is in an exceptional form, scoring in the past 10 straight games! The only absence from the Catalans is Gabriel Milito, as usual, and they should start with the following eleven:
Valdes; Abidal, Puyol, Pique, Dani Alves; Busquets, Xavi, Iniesta; Messi, Pedro and Villa
Real Madrid is also in a sensational form, still unbeaten this season. In fact, they haven’t lost a match since last April in the last season by 0-2 at home with this same Barcelona, in a game which cost the title despite the excellent season they made. But this year, there’s Mourinho in the bench.
Real Madrid is usually accused of practicing an unattractive football, as usual in Mourinho’s teams, specially in the beginning of the season, but recently they have been much more dynamic, convincing and attractive. To Barça’s 8-0 they’ve answered with a 5-1 home win and in the middle of the week they flew to Amsterdam to humiliate Ajax by 4-0, which leads them to 5 straight wins.
And, as usual, they also have they’re star, Ronaldo, in excellent form. The Portuguese is the best striker in the Spanish League with 1 goal difference from Messi, since he don’t have the straightness from Messi, but when he scores, he scores in great amount. At the last Weekend, he answered Messi’s hat-trick with a hat-trick by himself, and in the mid-week he scored two goals in Amsterdam. A month ago, Ronaldo did a poker against Santander, scoring 4 goals the first time in his career.
Analysing the absences, Mourinho has the usual Kaka and Gago injured and apparently Higuain is a last hour absence also. He should start with the following eleven:
Casillas; Marcelo, Sergio Ramos, Pepe, Ricardo Carvalho; Khedira, Xabi Alonso, Ozil; Di Maria, Ronaldo, Benzema
I believe this is really the concept of a triple game. Probably the best two teams in the world, the two best players in the world, and two of the best managers in the world, one of them considered by many as the best. For everything that involves this game, I believe that everyone will agree that it will be pretty unpredictable, noticing that they’re both at the same level in terms of points, form, players, mentality, quality, but still with different styles, and that’s why I will turn to one side over the other. I think there is a factor which benefits each team. In Barça’s side, the home factor, with Camp Nou completely loaded for this game, a game which for the Portuguese can be seen as a Porto-Benfica, even though at a completely superior level.
But in Real’s side, and I think this is the key factor that balances to their side between both teams, is Mourinho. Not that I’m lowering Guardiola, which is an excellent coach, but he haven’t the mid games, the psychology Mourinho have. I don’t have the stats, but I’m pretty sure that Mourinho is one of the best coaches in the world with a W/L ration in this kind of games. The way he mentally feeds the team, the way he psychologically works his players to this kind of games, makes him the winner he is, and most times he wins these confrontations. Hence I consider he will in a certain way nullify the home-factor from Barça. He can’t stop the support from the crowd, but I doubt that playing in the Camp Nou will have a negative effect in Real. They are players full of experience, built by a coach that live those games and which I have never seen entering a game like this with goosebumps. Last year Mourinho came here to this same stadium, eliminating Barça from the Champions League in the Semi-Finals, taking away their celestial opportunity of winning the cup in Barnabeu.
The mind games have been obvious last week, with Xabi Alonso and Sergio Ramos sent offs in the Champions, all those little things that protects the team. Following my thoughts, and considering this to be a very tied game, and being perfectly aware that I can lose this bet, and I pretty much consider this meeting as 50-50, I clearly see the value in this odds for Real, with the tie, result I consider plausible considering the equilibrium, being also rewarded by this bet, and hence I also see value in other Real’s possible bets, since the high number of bets available. There is a scenario which I am foreseeing, a goal by Mourinho’s team between the 30-40 minutes, and then another one in the second half killing the game with the 2-0.