Five things we learned from La Liga

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Photo: Super Sport
Photo: Super Sport

Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid share a historic rivalry when it comes to football and there was a sudden turn of events when Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid made a hat-trick in the La Liga match. This unexpected performance from the Portuguese superstar helped Real Madrid win their first La Liga title after five years as they defeated their opponent by a score of 3-0.

Because of Lionel Messi’s sickness, Barcelona is four points behind Real Madrid at the moment because the rest of the team failed to break down nine-man Malaga.

If we look at these 12 weeks of La Liga, most of us would definitely have noticed these five points.

Injuries force Real change for good

In some of the most crucial times when the best players of Real Madrid were down with the injury, the team showed commendable skills on the field and amazed the audience with its even better performance.

During the Madrid Derby League, six of Real Madrid’s players were injured and still the team managed to win. This was quite impressive because the team did not only win without the help of its six best players but it was also their first win in four years. Ronaldo was forced to take a more central position on the orders of their coach Zinedine Zidane when strikers Alvaro Morata and Karim Benzema were missing from the game. The team gave an excellent performance as Gareth Bale took his position on the left of Ronaldo while Isco covered Ronaldo’s back. It was without a doubt one of their best displays of skill and determination. Zidane should now be keener on maintaining the balance of the team when the big players return to the team after their recovery.

Atletico’s defensive wall collapses

Deigo Simeone is well known for his rock-solid defensive approach and he aimed to introduce an attacking edge to their play this season but it seems like all his plans of attaining the title went down the drain when Atletico Madrid faced their third defeat out of the four league games. It is quite evident that such a performance from the team is enough to put an early end to their dream of winning the title. Simeone’s team have slipped down to the sixth position.

For the first time since Simeone has started coaching the team, Atletico has conceded in five consecutive league games and since September 2012, it was the first time on Saturday that Los Rojiblancos  conceded three goals at home in La Liga.

Unhealthy dependence on Messi returns

Barcelona has created the most feared forward line in the world of football by uniting the deadly combination of Lionel Messi with Luis Suarez and Neymar. This combination even put an end to the notion that Messi was the only capable player in the team and all the players were dependent on him for victory. This belief created quite a hype during the reign of Pep Guardiola and Barcelona definitely found a wise way to put an end to it.

When Messi was injured last season and had to stay off the field for two months for recovery, Neymar and Suarez handled the team pretty well and ensured that Barcelona did not suffer in the absence of its most valuable player. The team definitely strengthened its position in the title race under the partnership of Neymar and Suarez.

However, Barcelona lost all the four games in La Liga this season just because of the fact that Messi did not complete his 90 minutes on the field. No doubt the team had to pay a heavy price in the absence of their superstar.

Messi escaped a narrow defeat last month against Celta Vigo with the score of 4-3, got himself injured in the match against Atletico with a 1-1 draw and also lost at home against Alaves in September. Later on, his commitments with Argentina limited his participation in League matches.

Sociedad soaring

Barcelona is scheduled to travel to soaring Real Sociedad next weekend and it is suspected that things might get worse for the team ahead of El Classico which is supposed to start in two weeks’ time.

It won’t be wrong to refer to Sociedad as Barcelona’s bogey team as they have won all of their last three meetings at home. Sociedad managed to win at Sporting Gijon and made this fourth victory in a row with a score of 3-1. This lifted their position atop Atletico and they were just one point away from being in the top four.

Eibar 100 not out

Basque Minnows were completely in form and their brilliant practice was reflected in their 1-0 victory against Celta Vigo. This victory made them attain the position of number eight.

The winning goal of Fran Rico was Eibar’s 100th La Liga goal and this milestone was achieved in just their third season in the top flight. They have already amassed a nine-point lead over the bottom three and a fourth La Liga campaign is already looking assured.

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