Is it possible for Barcelona to lose the Primera Liga?
Barcelona look unstoppable this season but did Sporting Gijon coach Manolo Preciado tempt fate when he said it was crazy to think La Liga was not already in the bag?
Pep Guardiola’s team swept aside Sporting 3-1 on Sunday to make it 10 consecutive league wins.
After Sunday’s game, when Samuel Eto’o’s double took his tally for the season to 21 and Barca’s right-back rapier Daniel Alves scored a screamer of a third, Preciado was full of praise.
“We came (to the Nou Camp) with the idea of frightening them a little, but it was them that frightened us,” he said. “When you are in the stadium you see the true significance of this team. They are the best in the world. They have everything — fighting spirit, physical strength, attitude, play etc. They were far superior to us.
“It’s madness to think they will not win the league. They are a side completely different to any other and I only hope they continue like this.”
With 16 matches left to play, Barca need more than a wobble to lose the top spot in the league. They still have to meet Real Madrid at the Bernabeu on May 3, but could the champions really make a late burst on the rails?
Real have put on an impressive run of form to win seven matches on the trot, and have only conceded one goal along the way.
Under Juande Ramos they have climbed to second from sixth and their 1-0 win over Racing Santander on Saturday has moved them nine points clear of third-placed Sevilla. But the 12-point gap on leaders Barca has not budged an inch.
In the King’s Cup, Barcelona are 2-0 up after the first leg of their semi-final against Real Mallorca. With a domestic double on the cards, what price a treble?
They face Olympique Lyon in the first knockout round of the Champions League later this month, and must be considered favourites to progress to the next stage.
European champions Manchester United, who have completed 13 league matches without conceding a goal, look like the team most capable of threatening a side who have netted 68 goals in 22 league outings.
Guardiola is in his first season as a top flight coach…they have not been unduly affected by injuries ….could it still all go wrong?
PHOTO: Barcelona’s Dani Alves (R) and Lionel Messi celebrate a goal against Sporting Gijon during their Spanish first division match at the Camp Nou, Feb. 8, 2009. REUTERS/Albert Gea