Lionel Messi - The best ever?

Barcelona v Real Madrid Odds: Barcelona look to maintain unbeaten record as first El Clasico match of the year approaches

barcelonaBarcelona are considered 4/5 favourites by Paddy Power to win El Clasico as Real Madrid travel to the Nou Camp and aim to give Barcelona their first loss of the season.

The first El Clasico meeting of the year has finally arrived and Barcelona will be looking to maintain their unbeaten start at the expense of arch rivals Real Madrid.

El Classico: Best Odds
Barcelona icon1 5/6
Draw icon1 13/4
Real Madrid icon1 15/4

Barcelona are sitting at the top of La Liga having only dropped two points all season and winning eight out of their first nine games.

The good news for Gerardo Martino’s side is that Lionel Messi will be able to start Saturday night’s game after emerging from the victory against AC Milan unscathed during the week.

Martino is also likely to stick with Brazilian striker Neymar instead of Pedro despite the Spaniard scoring 5 goals in La Liga in comparison to Neymar’s 2.

Having the luxury of players like Pedro and Cesc Fabregas on the bench will be a comfort for Martino who is currently managing a side with the best attacking record in La Liga having scored a staggering 28 goals already this season.

It means that the pressure is firmly on Carlo Ancelotti and Real to get a result here as they currently sit 3 points behind Barcelona in the league in third place.

Gareth Bale will not be starting for Real Madrid in his first El Clasico game as the Welshman is struggling to return to full match fitness meaning that either Isco or Angel Di Maria will fill his place in the starting lineup.

Karim Benzema’s recent good form will also likely see him get the nod as the lone striker for Real leaving Alvaro Morato to join the likes of Gareth Bale and Luka Modric with a place amongst the substitutes.

Real will certainly have some reasons to be confidence though as they have won 2 of the last 3 El Clasico games held in La Liga and have been unbeaten the last two times that they have visited the Nou Camp in the league.

Barcelona and Real Madrid both know that a win tonight will give them both serious momentum in the title picture and no doubt the managers and fans will have eyes on Messi, Ronaldo and company to see who will get the decisive goal in the first El Clasico of the season.

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