Real Madrid have been close to sealing the La Liga title for months now. With a 17-point lead over the second-placed team, it is only a matter of time before the title is confirmed. There is, however, an interesting twist to the tale.
Suppose Sevilla and Barcelona drop points in their games tonight, a win over Espanyol at the Bernabeu will secure the La Liga title for Real Madrid.
It would also open the doors for a guard of honour from Atletico Madrid, for Carlo Ancelotti’s side face Los Rojiblancos in their next league game. As derby rivals, it would be an incredible moment for Madrid.
Not to mention, it could open the doors to an incredibly contested game, for the gesture is bound to be taken harshly by Diego Simeone and co.
Real Madrid have been unstoppable domestically this season. In 33 games, they have lost only thrice and drawn six.
In their 24 wins, they have scored 69 goals while conceding less than 30 goals. Moreover, they have maintained a clean sheet on 13 occasions.
The league leaders currently sit on 78 points, with second-placed Atletico Madrid on 61.
Arch-rivals Barcelona are third with 60 points, though they have two games in hand over the Madrid based sides. This will surely go down as one of the club’s most dominant league seasons in history.
With the league sealed, all attention now turns to the Champions League. Carlo Ancelotti’s men face Manchester City in the semifinals of the prestigious competition, and the first leg is scheduled at the Santiago Bernabeu for next week.
Given that domestic results no longer play a decisive role, the manager and players can give their all to the UCL. Needless to say, it is a big relief.
Atletico Madrid will try to sign Arsenal, Liverpool target for free in the summer
Atletico Madrid saw a lot of movement during the January transfer window as they saw several players leave, while also bringing in a couple of new faces in.
But one player who they tried to sign and could not is Borussia Monchengladbach forward Marcus Thuram.
Indeed, according to AS, was on the top of director Andrea Berta’s list for the winter window as he is in the final six months of his contract. But, Gladbach asked for a fee of around €10-12 million to offload him, which prompted Atletico Madrid to move for Depay instead.
But the report states that Thuram continues to be on the agenda at the Civitas Metropolitano and Berta will try to sign him again in the summer transfer window.
However, there will be intense competition for the 25-year-old’s services given that he will be available for a free transfer at the end of the season.
Juventus and Inter Milan have shown an interest in Thuram, but there are a lot of clubs in England wishing to sign him up.
Indeed, Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur are all said to be gunning for the French forward’s signing while more clubs could join the list of his suitors as days progress.
So, it will be important for Atletico Madrid to achieve a top-four finish in La Liga and qualify for the UEFA Champions League for next season if they wish to attract a player of Thuram’s capability and calibre.
The 25-year-old has netted 13 goals and set up four more in 19 matches across all competitions. His ability to play anywhere across the frontline makes him an attractive prospect for interested parties such as Atletico.
But given the intense competition, Diego Simeone & co. will need to act swiftly if they wish to sign Thuram.