Fantasy La Liga picks for this weekend’s games

La Liga

This weekend sees another full schedule of LaLiga fixtures so it’s time to be getting your fantasy LaLiga selections ready!

Starting Friday night with Alaves against Real Valladolid, all 20 teams are in action with the last fixture between Real Betis and Valencia on Sunday night.

As always, we’ve taken a look at the fixtures from a LaLiga fantasy football viewpoint to help you with your picks for the weekend.

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

How Barcelona will beat Man Utd

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They might be favourites to win the tie over two legs, but there’s no way that Barcelona will be taking Manchester United lightly, particularly at Old Trafford.

Playing at the Camp Nou for the second leg may seem to afford the Catalans an advantage of sorts, but Ernesto Valverde and his team will want to make that a formality.

In order to do so, they’ll need to take the game to the Red Devils and quieten the expected 75,000 crowd.

But just how are they going to manage it?

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Barcelona aiming to have La Liga title secure by April

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Barcelona will look to have successfully retained their La Liga title before the end of April, in time for a potential Champions League semi final.

As it stands, Ernesto Valverde’s side a huge favourites to win back to back domestic titles, with a ten point lead over second place Atletico Madrid, with nine games to go in the 2018-19 campaign.

If Barcelona win all of their forthcoming games, they will be Spanish champions again with three games to spare – winning the league at home to Levante at the Nou Camp on April 27th.

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Do Barcelona really need Matthijs de Ligt this summer?

Just when it looked like Barcelona were going to go through the January transfer window without making much of an impression, they dropped a rather significant announcement, confirming a move for Ajax and Netherlands midfielder Frenkie de Jong.

The Dutch youngster won’t pitch up at Camp Nou until this summer, with Ajax still in the Champions League, making the competition’s quarter final after thumping Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu, but nonetheless, it was a statement of intent from the Catalans. De Jong is a Barcelona sort of player and will be their next great central midfielder.

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Speculation continues to swirl, however, that Barca will swoop for another Ajax youngster this summer. Matthijs de Ligt has been hyped, along with de Jong, as a future Dutch superstar, becoming a key figure for both his club and for the Netherlands national team over the past 18 months or so.

De Ligt is, indeed, quite the talent. At just 19 years old, he is the best young defender in the European game right now and so it’s therefore unsurprising that the elite, including Barcelona, are circling. Manchester City, Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid have also been linked, but it’s the Catalans who seem to be leading the pursuit.

Do Barcelona really need de Ligt, though? There can be no denying the teenager’s quality. He will be the sport’s next great centre back, but Barca already have a defender willing and capable of bringing the ball out from the back in Gerard Pique. A backline with both de Ligt and Pique might be a little too adventurous.

What’s more, Barca have spent big on defenders in recent years. They have Samuel Umtiti, a much more natural partner for Pique, and Clement Lenglet, the French defender signed from Sevilla just last summer who has proven himself to be an adequate option for the Catalans. Do they really need de Ligt at this point?

The plan might be for the Ajax centre back to be the long term successor to Pique. That would at least make some sense, but Pique is arguably in the midst of his best ever season for Barcelona. At 32, he might be entering the twilight of his career, but Pique remains, arguably, the best in Europe in his position. If de Ligt is to one day replace him, he might be waiting a while.

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Valverde has to rest Barcelona’s big hitters now

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After another dominant El Clasico performance, and with the Champions League once again the priority, Ernesto Valverde must start tinkering with his squad.

His ‘safety first’ approach will need to take a back seat in a handful of the next few league games as Barca go for it in the European competition.

Though the Catalans can still conceivably be caught in La Liga, both Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid are far enough behind for the Blaugrana to have a blip and still remain as leaders. Continue reading

Best 11 fantasy players in La Liga over the weekend

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It was another competitive weekend in Spain’s La Liga which saw Barcelona win El Clasico over Real Madrid and stretch their lead over them. Below we take a look at the top performing players in Spain and how they affected, the European Fantasy League La Liga points tables over the weekend.

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Goalkeeper- Marc ter Stegen- Barcelona

ter Stegen gets the vote as goalkeeper of the week as he made some crucial saves in the biggest game in Europe to keep a clean sheet away to Real Madrid a Barcelona went 7 points clear at the top of La Liga. In the process ter Stegen earned 7 points.

Defender- Diego Godin – Atletico Madrid

At 33 years old Diego Godin is one of the best defenders in the league and with 6 points earned last weekend he gained the most points of any one in the back four. Atletico won their match 2-0 and he was part of a team that kept a clean sheet ensuring his club remain in 2nd place and look more secure for a Champions League place now.

Defender- Gerard Pique – Barcelona

Gerard Pique again was a rock in the Barcelona defence who were collectively very impressive when they played their great rival Real Madrid at the Bernabeu. And he earned 5 points in the process to be amongst the best defenders of the weekend.

Defender – Jordi Alba- Barcelona

A defender who isn’t afraid to come forward and Alba of course was part of the Barcelona team to keep yet another clean sheet. Always rock solid at the weekend and earning 5 points just like his teammate Pique.

Defender- Santiago Arias – Atletico Madrid

Arias earned the same points as some of the best defenders in La Liga and he put in a storming display as part of the Atletico back four, earning 5 points and keeping a clean sheet as his team beat Real Sociedad away from home 2-0. Arias at 27 is making his debut season for the club but has now become a regular.

Midfielder- Ivan Rakitic- Barcelona

Ivan Rakitic scored the goal that sealed Barcelona’s win over Real Madrid and the player in the process earned 6 points which gave him the most points for a midfielder this weekend in the fantasy league. He is currently in 12th position overall with 32 points.

Midfielder- Santiago Carzola- Villarreal

Carzola has proved yet again at the weekend why he is 9th overall in the fantasy standings for a midfielder. Despite Villarreal losing 2-1 to Alaves, Cazorla scored a penalty and earned vital points.

Midfielder- Sergi Roberto- Barcelona

Some are saying it was tactical brilliance from Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde to switch his players up and put Sergi Roberto in for the match v Real Madrid. It held the ball up very well and was part of a team that kept Madrid without a goal and linked up play well assisting Ivan Rakitic for the only goal of the game was the icing on top.

Midfielder- Takashi Inui- Alaves

Inui was superb as Alaves beat Villarreal 2-1 at the weekend and it was the Japanese midfielder who got the winner and earned 4 points at the weekend to be included in the best 11 performers.

Forward- Christian Stuani- Girona

Christian Stuani is 5th in the overall standings with a fantasy transfer value of 8.5m and he earned amongst the top points at the weekend with 8. He scored both goals as Girona beat Vallecano 2-0 away from home.

Forward- Alvaro Morata- Atletico Madrid

Along with Christian Stuani, Alvaro Morata was the highest performing forward of the weekend with 8 points. Morata has quickly settled into his loan deal from Chelsea, is valued at 8m and he scored 2 goals in the space of 3 minutes to give his team the win.

Do you have what it takes to challenge the best La Liga Fantasy Managers? If you’re up for the challenge then play www.liga-fantasy.com now!

 

Messi on fire as Barcelona win at Sevilla

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There was no looking past the world’s best player on Saturday afternoon as Lionel Messi put on another masterclass to help Barcelona win 4-2 at Sevilla.

The home side actually went ahead through a well-taken finish from Jesus Navas but Messi equalised with a sublime left-footed volley just minutes later.

Sevilla were in the lead again at half-time, however, after Gabriel Mercado scored three minutes before the break. Pablo Machin’s side were good value for their 2-1 lead at that stage.

Machin’s half-time team-talk probably consisted of something like “keep Messi quiet and we can win this”.

Barcelona face tough run, as Real Madrid mount challenge

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Defending La Liga champions are facing a tough run of fixtures in domestic and European action, just as bitter rivals Real Madrid are preparing a late bid for the league title.

Ernesto Valverde’s side have drawn their last two league games, against Valencia and Athletic Bilbao, dropping four key points, in the same fortnight that Santiago Solari’s team have beaten Alaves and Atletico Madrid.

That has nudged Los Blancos ahead of their city rivals as the Catalan side’s main challengers, and the current leaders will be looking over their shoulder.

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Barcelona swoop for Valencia defender Jeison Murillo

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Barcelona have made their first move of the La Liga January 2019 transfer window, by bringing in 26 year old defender Jeison Murillo on a loan dea until the end of the season, from Valencia.

Colombian international Murillo has appeared just once in league action for Marcelino’s side so far this season, after joining from Italian side Inter Milan in the summer.

Murillo initially signed on a two year loan contract at the start of last season, with an obligation for Valencia to buy inserted into the details the deal.

Valencia exercised the purchase option at the start of the season, after he made 17 La Liga appearances in 2017-18, as they returned to the Top Four in Spain. However he has become more and more of a fringe player this season, and now Barcelona have accepted a purchase option on him at the end of the 2018-19 campaign.

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Barcelona set for Umtiti injury waiting game

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Barcelona have confirmed that defender Samuel Umtiti will not undergo knee surgery, but the La Liga holders have confirmed that he will remained sidelined with the issue.

Umtiti had not played for the Catalan side since September 26th, prior to their 1-1 draw with Atletico Madrid last weekend.

However manager Ernesto Valverde brought the French international back into the fold for the crunch tie against Diego Simeone’s side, despite uncertainty over his fitness, due to other defenders being ruled out.

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