3 things to look out for in the Valencia v Barca game

One of the classic La Liga clashes takes place this weekend; Valencia v Barcelona.

Though not a derby as such, it’s not far off, and it’s a match that virtually guarantees goals and moments of the highest quality.

Under Albert Celades, Valencia are still trying to get back to somewhere approaching their best form under Marcelino. They’ve been hit and miss, but are always a dangerous opponent for the Blaugrana. Continue reading

Top fantasy LaLiga picks as Barcelona prepare for tough tussle at Valencia

This weekend sees another full list of La Liga clashes as Spanish football’s top flight settles in for the second half of the season.

It’s time to look ahead to the upcoming games as you decide on what changes, if any, to make in fantasy LaLiga.

Have a read and see if any tips stick out which might suit your fantasy LaLiga team this weekend.

Continue reading

It’s painful for Barcelona fans to see Sergio Busquets struggling

Time waits for no man, and that’s especially true where football is concerned.

Not quite ‘blink and you’ll miss it,’ a footballer’s career is fleeting nevertheless.

As players get into their latter years the trick is to bow out whilst still at the highest level, rather than trying to keep going until the bitter end.

That’s because watching a player’s demise leaves one sad and harking back to bygone days, and it’s something that is, unfortunately, blighting Sergio Busquets’ days at Barcelona.

Continue reading

Best 11 Players of the Weekend in La Liga: Matchday 20

Barcelona won and Real Madrid also and the two giants of Spanish football remain locked in at the top on the same points. They now have an 8 point lead over 3rd placed Atletico Madrid who lost their 3rd game of the season. Let’s take a look at what players in La Liga performed the best in matchday 20.

Formation: 4-4-2

Goalkeeper: Marko Dmitrovic- Eibar

Many goalkeepers earned 7 points with clean sheets but it is Eibar’s Marko Dmitrovic who stood out. The reason being he made some vital saves and ended up keeping a clean sheet against Atletico Madrid, no mean feat at all. He now has 9 points and is valued at 6.5m.

Defender: Leandro Cabrera- Getafe

Leandro  Cabrera was brilliant as his side won 3-0 over Leganes and he earned 9 points, thus he kept a clean sheet and also he opened the scoring which would lead to the win. It was a perfect weekend for the defender who has 29 points and is valued at 5.5m.

Defender: Allan-Romeo Nyom- Getafe

Just like Cabrera, Nyom had a great weekend as part of the defence that kept a clean sheet and he also scored a goal. He only earned 8 points though as he was also booked in an eventful game. He is valued at 6m.

Defender: Damien Suarez- Getafe

Sticking with Getafe, Suarez earned 7 points as the club beat Leganes in a 3-0 game which was one sided. This was his 4th clean sheet this season and he now has  total of 14 points and is valued at 7.5m.

Defender: Samuel Umtiti- Barcelona

This was a very important game for Samuel Umtiti playing his first game for new Barcelona manager Quique Setien and only his 5th start of the season so there was a lot to prove as Barcelona won their game 1-0. Umtiti can be brought into your team for 7.5m.

Midfielder: Casemiro- Real Madrid

Real Madrid recorded a 2-1 win over Sevilla and Casemiro was brilliant in scoring 2 goals and he earned 7 points. It would have been more but he lost some through being booked near the end of the game. The player now has 25 points and is valued at 7.5m.

Midfielder: Sergio Canales- Real Betis

Sergio Canales earned 8 points from midfield as Real Betis beat Real Sociedad 3-0. Canales assisted in the opening goal and then scored the 3rd and final one to top off a great days work. He now has 15 points and is valued at 7.5m.

Midfielder: Joaquin Sanchez- Real Betis

Joaquin Sanchez was brilliant in midfield as Betis beat Sociedad 3-0. He helped the team keep a clean sheet, attacked well and he scored. It was his 7th goal of the season and he has been rather outstanding this term. He can be bought for 7.5m.

Midfielder: Arturo Vidal- Barcelona

Vidal held the line well and kept his head in what was a very close win for Barcelona as they won 1-0 over Granada. He also assisted Lionel Messi for Barcelona’s only goal of the game. Vidal has 34 points and is valued at 12.5m.

Striker: Ante Budimir- Mallorca

Ante Budimir earned a whopping 10 points at the weekend as his side beat Valencia 4-1 and Budimir had his game of the season. He scored 2 goals winning the game and assisted in the last goal. He has 8 goals now this season and can be brought into your team for 6.5m.

Striker: Lionel Messi- Barcelona

Lionel Messi is used to being in teams of the weekend, and he scored his sides only goal as Barca won 1-0. Messi was the difference once more and earned 4 points at the weekend. He now has 71 points and is in the lead of La Liga strikers by 13 points. It was Messi’s 14th goal of the season.

Think you know Spanish football? Play https://liga-fantasy.com now!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Barcelona must prioritise Pique’s successor

Time and again we are told of Barcelona’s dependance on Lionel Messi and how they wouldn’t be close to the same team without his influence.

That is ostensibly true of course, but there are other players in the team that are coming to the end of their professional careers and for whom the Catalans will find just as hard to replace.

One of those is their central defender, Gerard Pique. Continue reading

Top fantasy La Liga picks for this weekend’s action in Spain

We have another full schedule of LaLiga games coming up in Spain this weekend.

It’s time to look ahead to the upcoming games as you decide on what changes, if any, to make in fantasy LaLiga.

Have a read and see if any tips stick out which might suit your fantasy LaLiga team this weekend.

Continue reading

What would success in 2019/20 look like for Barcelona?

It’s fair to say that this season has been quite a tumultuous one for Barcelona.

It began with missed transfer targets. Though Antoine Griezmann and Frenkie De Jong were added to the roster, both Neymar and Matthijs De Ligt were missed, even though the latter was virtually promised by president, Josep Maria Bartomeu.

That put a sour taste in supporters mouths before a ball had even been kicked. Continue reading

Barcelona sack Ernesto Valverde but the situation turns into a farce

Barcelona have sacked coach Ernesto Valverde but the handling of the affair ended up turning into a farce. Instead of the club making a professional decision the story ran out of control when former player Xavi rejected taking the job.

The Catalan giants ended up exposing themselves early, Valverde knew he was out of a job as the Barca board scrambled to appoint someone after the club were beaten 3-2 by Atletico Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup semi-finals out in Saudi Arabia. The timing though seems off. It is ended with Barcelona fans having a Valverde for a domestic league game, only to see him and the team go halfway around the world to play in the Super Cup and the team coming back with Valverde gone and a new manager in place.

But why now? Why did Barcelona make this decision? Valverde after all becomes the first Barcelona coach in 17 years sacked mid way through the season. The last was Louis van Gaal. It has been reported that Barcelona panicked when they witnessed the Atletico game. The club were 2-1 up with 10 minutes to go and lost 3-2. It reminded them of the Champions League collapses against Roma and Liverpool when the club spurned a 3 goal lead, each time with Valverde in charge.

It’s odd in a way that the club have finally said goodbye to him given that they are top of the league in Spain and qualified for the knock out stages of the Champions League. If they were going to sack him surely it would have come days after going out of the Champions League in embarrassing fashion to Liverpool, or at the end of last season, but he was liked by the board, well until now.

So who will be replacing him? It should have been Xavi and that would have been the natural decision. But the former Barca great actually did the most decent thing and declined to leave his current managerial position at Al Sadd during their season. It was reported he could take over in the summer but Barca wanted someone now. That someone is Quique Setien.

Setien’s last job was coach of Real Betis where he recorded some great results including beating Barcelona. He has long been an admirer of the clubs playing philosophy and could be the perfect replacement, only time will tell on that, but he has never had a win rate above 50%, at the same time he has never coached one of the elite teams and at 61 his dream has finally come true.

As for Valverde, well once you have managed Barcelona it is like winning an Oscar and he will be high demand, with no problems to find another job, although he will more than likely take the next 6 months off. The one shame is the way Barcelona handled it all for a man who probably should have gone this summer. Having said that one could question if he has been a failure for Barcelona? Sure their performances collapsed in the Champions League but Barcelona won 2 league titles under him and two cups. Week in week out they did a job on Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid to win La Liga.

Former Barcelona great Andres Iniesta called the handling of Valverde’s sacking ‘a bit ugly’, and he was right to say that. It’s interesting how loyal figures at the club are usually shown the back door or the handling for their exits is not done let’s say with the best of etiquette in mind. But what is done is done and Setien will be thrown in at the deep end, his dream has finally arrived and he will be hoping that it isn’t a nightmare.

How well do you know European Football? Want to challenge the best Spanish Fantasy Managers? Play www.liga-fantasy.com now.maxi

 

 

Can Ansu Fati become Lionel Messi’s successor?

Before the start of the 2019/20 campaign, only those with knowledge of Barcelona’s youth team players had heard of Ansu Fati.

The youngster had sailed through most of the age groups at the club, due in no small part to the fearlessness with which he approached every challenge.

That has stood him in good stead since his promotion to the first team. Continue reading

Best 11 players in La Liga week 19

We are officially at the halfway point of the Spanish league season and the favourites to win the league, Barcelona and Real Madrid are both locked on 40 points with Barca on top due to goal difference.

We take a look at the players who performed this past weekend in La Liga, who made the cut for the best 11 and who didn’t?

Formation: 4-4-2

Goalkeeper: Thibaut Courtois- Real Madrid 7pts

The spotlight has been on Courtois since his move to Madrid but this season he is amongst the very best goal keepers. Along with four others he was able to earn 7 points for his clean sheet. But he gets the nod as Madrid played a local derby in beating Getafe as the club won 3-0.

Defender: Raphael Varane- Real Madrid 9pts

What a weekend it was for Raphael Varane who kept a clean sheet in the Madrid derby as his team won 3-0. But what nobody was expecting was that he scored 2 goals in the game and was the main reason his side won and strolled in the end to victory. Varane is currently 4th in the fantasy rankings and can be bought for just 8.5m.

Defender: Daniel Wass- Valencia 6pts

Daniel Wass was at the heart of everything and had a very good game as Valencia beat Eibar 1-0 and are now in the top six. He would have picked up more points but he got booked in the game.

Defender: Daniel Carvajal- Real Madrid 5pts

This was another solid game for Carvajal in defence as he was able to help his side to a clean sheet with a 3-0 win at Getafe. The defender is currently the best in La Liga fantasy rankings and has 50 points so far and is just 7m to buy.

Defender: Domingas Duarte- Granada 5pts

Domingas Duarte has proved to be one of the surprise defenders this season and is doing well week in and week out. He helped his team secure a 1-0 win over Mallorca and kept a clean sheet in doing so as the club propped up the table.

Midfielder: Luka Modric- Real Madrid 6pts

The world player of the year in 2018 was dominant in midfield as Real Madrid beat Getafe and to top it off after the club were 2-0 up he put the win beyond doubt by scoring a 3rd goal, which was ironically his 3rd of the season.

Midfielder: Manuel Trigueros- Villarreal 4pts

Trigueros has only scored 10 points all season and 40% of those came in this match as Villarreal beat Real Sociedad 2-1 away from home. The midfielder opened the scoring for his side after converting a penalty.

Midfielder: Santiago Cazorla- Villarreal 4pts

Sticking with Villarreal is Santiago Cazorla who came on as a substitute on the hour mark and then won the game for his side with a goal as the club ran out 2-1 winners.

Midfielder: Angel Correa- Atletico Madrid 4pts

Midfielders did not have a great weekend in La Liga with the average best scores of just 4 points. Correa gained his after his side beat Levante 2-1 and he opened the scoring which set the game up for his side.The player has earned 29 points so far this season.

Striker: Luis Suarez- Barcelona 6pts

Luis Suarez is still scoring goals as his team Barcelona drew 2-2 with Espanyol in the derby game. Suarez scored the equaliser for Barca and the teams first goal which ended up setting them up with a point at least to go home with. Suarez is the 3rd best striker in the league so far and has scored 11 goals.

Striker: Enes Unal- Real Valladolid 7pts

But the best striker this past weekend goes to Enes Unal who bagged 7 points as his side drew 2-2 with Leganes. Both times Valladolid were a goal down and both times Unal scored to get them back in the game. He is valued at 5.5m and has scored 3 goals so far this season.

How well do you know European Football? Want to challenge the best Spanish Fantasy Managers? Play www.liga-fantasy.com now.