Madrid go into the game top of La Liga, five points clear of second-placed Sevilla albeit with a game more played than them. Barcelona aren’t anywhere near the title race – they’re currently sixth in La Liga, a shocking 17 points behind Madrid.
Madrid have won two games on the bounce – they beat Valencia 4-1 at the Santiago Bernabeu at the weekend after winning 3-1 away at Alcoyano in the Copa del Rey during the week. Barcelona drew 1-1 at Granada on Saturday and beat Linares Deportivo 2-1 in the Copa on Wednesday evening.
Speaking to the media before the game in comments carried by Mundo Deportivo, veteran Sergio Busquets was keen to underline just how important it was for Barcelona to play Madrid on their terms, to take control of the match and assert their dominance.
“Real Madrid will arrive with confidence, it will be an even game like the one at Camp Nou,” he said. “Although we lost, we showed a good side to ourselves and we really could have beaten them.”
The little details, he said, “are going to be fundamental. It’s a Clasico, everything is equal regardless of how many points you have or where you are in La Liga.
“We have to be solid because they can score out of nothing. We have to keep possession and give nothing away.” Busquets also assured that Barcelona must be “faithful to our style. We have to create chances and that’s what we want to do.”