Euro 2020 Special

La Liga: Barcelona’s Title Aspirations Falter As Real Madrid Cruise Ahead

Barcelona’s bid to challenge Real Madrid for this season’s La Liga title received a bloody blow this week as they suffered a humiliating defeat to Cadiz on Monday. Real Madrid’s win over Osasuna has now increased the gap between both teams to 18 points, with Carlo Ancelotti’s men in need of just four points from their remaining fixtures to lift the trophy.

Barcelona will now have to fight for a second-place finish, with Atletico Madrid and Sevilla giving stiff competition to the Catalan giants.

As the 2021-22 season of La Liga reaches its climax, we take a look at Barcelona’s prospects in the league.



Entering last weekend’s Europa League fixture, Barcelona were riding high on confidence with a four-month unbeaten streak in La Liga. Under Xavi Hernandez, Barca made a steady climb from the ninth spot in the table to the second and had a real chance of challenging their arch-rivals Real Madrid once again for the title.

Barcelona’s transformation also made them the favourites to lift the Europa League trophy. But all those hopes faltered in the span of a week as Barcelona succumbed to two back-to-back losses at home. The loss to Eintracht Frankfurt came despite a late fight from the hosts, but it wasn’t enough to prevent their elimination.

In stark contrast, Barcelona looked limp on Monday, conceding an early goal to Cadiz and never really creating any opportunities to come back into the game. An early second-half goal from Lucas Perez was all the visitors needed to spin the match in their favour, even though they enjoyed less than a quarter of the possession.

That Barcelona would drop points to a team battling to stay in La Liga speaks volumes about the structural issues still prevalent at Camp Nou. Xavi was furious after the game, blaming the loss on the lack of desire and determination among the squad.



Carlo Ancelotti’s men continued their stupendous run at the top with a 3-1 win over Osasuna last night. Real Madrid have now accumulated 78 points from their 33 fixtures – 17 points more than second-placed Atletico Madrid and 18 points above Barcelona.

With seven games in hand, Barcelona can still accumulate 21 points in the league, although Real Madrid still need four more points from the remaining five fixtures to confirm their title.

Given their form, accumulating four points from five fixtures should be a cakewalk for Los Blancos. Only a major collapse from them together with a superb finish to the season by Barcelona can change the outcome of the season – a highly unlikely scenario.

Atletico Madrid and Sevilla are already out of the title race as both teams can grab only 15 and 18 points more from their remaining games respectively.



The loss to Cadiz has also dented the hopes at Camp Nou of breaking free from the fight for a Champions League spot. With a 0-0 draw against Granada, defending champions Atletico Madrid have climbed past Barcelona with 61 points.

Sevilla and Real Betis are also competing for a Champions League spot, but both teams dropped points this week giving Barcelona some breathing space.

Barcelona will travel to San Sebastian to face the sixth-placed Real Sociedad tonight, with the outcome of the fixture critical for the visitors. A win would bring back optimism at Camp Nou and enable the team to focus on finishing the season on a high note. A loss, on the other hand, would put their chances of finishing second in jeopardy.



Elimination from the Europa League means that Barcelona now have a straightforward schedule over the next few weeks after tonight’s fixture. They will host Rayo Vallecano, Mallorca, Celta Vigo, and Villarreal at home while travelling to face Real Betis and Getafe.

The one-week gap between fixtures, a luxury for European teams these days, and the absence of any headline fixtures until the end of the season will enable Xavi to work on the weaknesses in the squad and prepare for a stronger season next year.

Real Sociedad (Away) – 21st April

Rayo Vallecano (Home) – 24th April

Mallorca (Home) – 1st May

Real Betis (Away) – 8th May

Celta Vigo (Home) – 11th May

Getafe (Away) – 15th May

Villarreal (Home) – 22nd May While the chances of Barcelona winning La Liga are slim, an exciting and close finish to the season will increase the prospects of a competitive league next year.




Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.