La Liga Wk37: What to look out for

Matters may be decided at the top and bottom, but there are still places to play for, Coaches to be kept on and history to be made, as Football Espana explains…

1. Madrid battle for second place

With Barcelona having been crowned champions, second place is the best Real Madrid and Atletico can hope for. Los Blancos trail their city rivals by three points and host Celta Vigo on Saturday, but victory over the Galicians and a Colchoneros defeat to Europa League-chasing Getafe will see Zinedine Zidane’s side leapfrog into La Liga’s runners-up spot thanks to a superior head-to-head. On the other hand, Madrid could yet fall to fourth and suffer their worst League finish for 14 years if they somehow lose their remaining two games and Valencia pick up maximum points.

2. Europe rides on Seville derby

In what is undoubtedly the biggest Derbi sevillano in years, Sevilla must beat Real Betis on Saturday to have any chance of not only qualifying for the Europa League automatically but also toppling their Andalusian neighbours, who are five points clear in fifth place. Los Nervionenses look revitalised under Joaquin Caparros, the returning Coach having led them to back-to-back wins after almost two months without one in La Liga. Caparros laid the foundations for one of the most successful eras in Sevilla’s history back in 2005, and history could be about to repeat itself.

3. Coaches play for futures

An almighty scramble for Coaches is set to take place in La Liga this summer, and that’s without taking the final two matches into account. Sevilla, Athletic Bilbao and Leganes are already in the mix, but Imanol Alguacil has only 180 minutes of football to possibly secure the Real Sociedad vacancy, as does Villarreal’s Javi Calleja and David Gallego at Espanyol. Furthermore, Celta boss Juan Carlos Unzue is reported to be on his way out of Balaidos, while Girona’s Pablo Machin is believed to be a target for several clubs after comfortably guiding the Catalans to safety.

4. Levante can make history

Never before has a Levante side won five straight home games in the Primera, but victory over Barca on Sunday would see Paco Lopez’s class of 2017-18 do just that. Lopez’s miraculous work in presiding over seven wins in nine games since taking caretaker change of the Valencians has earned him a full season at the helm, but they face their biggest challenge yet, welcoming a Blaugrana side who remain unbeaten with only two rounds left to play and will be loathe to let their invincible status slip now, especially as no other Liga club has managed to pull off such a feat…

La Liga - Club News