Real Sociedad visit Real Madrid aiming to join title fight

Imanol Alguacil’s Real Sociedad have defied expectations this season and will wrestle their method into the La Liga title combat on Sunday once they face Real Madrid.

The Basques have been on a triumphing streak of 9 consecutive video games earlier than their tight 1-0 defeat by Barcelona at Camp Nou on Wednesday inside the Copa del Rey quarter-final. If La Real get better strongly on the Santiago Bernabeu, they could pull themselves degree on 41 factors with Real Madrid in second place.

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La Liga leaders Barcelona journey to Girona for a Catalan derby on Saturday, holding a 3 factor lead on Madrid. After triumphing the 2020 Copa del Rey trophy – the last performed in 2021 due to the pandemic – La Real are aiming to crash the anticipated two-team battle between the Spanish giants for La Liga.

Barcelona and Madrid regarded a reduce above the relaxation this season however La Real’s pleasant run has given them a opportunity of becoming a member of the race. Real Sociedad have performed one video game greater than the pinnacle two going into the weekend, which for many golf equipment will mark the midway factor of the league marketing campaign – 19 matches. Alguacil’s group put in a battling overall performance in opposition to the Catalans in spite of taking part in half the sport with 10 guys following Brais Mendez’s purple card. Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen made two pleasant saves close to the conclusion to give up the guests forcing additional time.

Alguacil shall be with out key midfielders David Silva and Mikel Merino, lacking by way of harm, however ambitions stay excessive in San Sebastian. “I don’t usually like the word ‘proud’ because it means we have lost and what we wanted was to win,” Alguacil informed reporters after defeat by Barcelona. “I think we competed, even though we had a man less.”

One of La Real’s key gamers this season has been Japanese ahead Takefusa Kubo, previously of Real Madrid. Kubo hit the crossbar in opposition to Barca inside the Copa del Rey and, inside the absence of Silva and Merino, performed on the tip of a diamond midfield. Along with Alexander Sorloth, who has scored 5 targets in his final seven video games, Real Sociedad have the weapons to break a shaky Madrid defence – and announce themselves as real contenders.

Alguacil deserves credit score for assisting each gamers hit pinnacle kind, alongside with Mendez and previously midfielder Martin Odegaard, now at Arsenal. Real Sociedad have received the pinnacle flight twice, in 1981 and 1982, final ending inside the pinnacle 4 in 2013, and reaching the latter is now their minimal goal.

Player to observe: Antoine Griezmann

It’s tough to overlook the French ahead along with his pink haircut on the second, and he has continued his beautiful World Cup kind at Atletico in 2023, taking part in in a deeper midfield position. Diego Simeone’s aspect journey to face high-flying Osasuna and Griezmann’s magic contact can be vital.

Key stats

5 – In La Liga Real Sociedad are nonetheless on a five-game triumphing streak

6 – Barcelona have shipped solely six targets this season inside the pinnacle flight

228 – Real Madrid ahead Karim Benzema is degree with the legendary Raul Gonzalez on 228 La Liga targets

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