Liga’s penultimate round about survival and qualifying

May 4th, 2012 - 8:41 pm ICT by IANS  

Madrid, May 4 (IANS) With the outcome of the BBVA Primera Liga football title resolved with Real Madrid crowned champions Wednesday night, the coming weekend’s penultimate round of games in Spain focus on the battle for survival and in qualifying for Europe.

Real Madrid will celebrate their title away to Granada, who still need a win to ensure their place in the top flight. Granada are five points above the drop zone with two games to play.

Barcelona, meanwhile, entertain Espanyol in a local derby in which the main point of interest will be to see whether or not Leo Messi can add to his tally of 46 league goals.

Valencia can assure third place and direct qualification for next season’s Champions League if they can beat Villarreal in the Mestalla Stadium.

Villarreal are only four points above relegation and also need a win in order to assure their survival. However, they would also stay up if Zaragoza lose at home to Racing Santander. That looks unlikely as Zaragoza have produced an amazing fightback in recent weeks, while Racing are already relegated.

Meanwhile Rayo Vallecano have also been sucked into the relegation fight and face a difficult away game to Sevilla, who need to win their two remaining matches in order to have any chance of a top six finish.

Atletico Madrid are currently in sixth place and need to assure a place in Europe, but in a game played just five days before their Europa League final at home to Athletic Club Bilbao, they face a difficult game at home to fourth placed Malaga.

Atletico coach Diego Pablo Simeone can’t really rest players and risk seeing his side end the season without a place in Europe, while Malaga will virtually assure Champions League football with a win.

Mallorca have suddenly emerged as candidates for a place in Europe and they take on Levante, who are still fifth in what promises to be a no-holds barred affair.

Osasuna also have a chance of finishing in the top six and play local rivals, Real Sociedad. Sporting play Betis needing a miracle to avoid relegation, while Athletic Bilbao and Getafe have little at stake allowing Athletic to rest key players ahead of their European final.

Related Stories

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Sports |

Subscribe