Both Real Madrid and Barca remain unbeaten in the league this season, having picked up seven wins and one draw. So, who will claim the bragging rights on Sunday?
Let’s start by looking at the hosts, Real Madrid, who head into this clash on the back of a 1-1 draw with Shakhtar Donetsk in the Champions League – thanks to Antonio Rudiger’s 95th-minte equaliser.
That means Los Blancos have avoided defeat in each of their last 17 games across all competitions, losing just two of their previous 28 home clashes.
Carlo Ancelotti’s men kicked off their La Liga campaign with six straight wins, scoring over 2.5 goals on three occasions during that period.
After being held to a 1-1 draw by Osasuna on Matchday 7, Real Madrid bounced back with a 1-0 victory at Getafe last weekend.
Can they extend their unbeaten streak?As for Barcelona, they drew 3-3 with Inter Milan in the Champions League on Wednesday – coming from behind on two occasions thanks to a Robert Lewandowski brace.
In La Liga, the Catalans kicked off their campaign with a goalless draw against Rayo Vallecano but have since chalked up seven consecutive victories.
Not only do Barca have the best offensive record in the league (20), but they also boast the best defensive record (1). Remarkably, they have kept seven clean sheets in eight outings this term.
It is also worth noting that Barcelona have avoided defeat in each of their previous 19 aways games in La Liga. Will they be able to maintain that hot streak in Madrid?
Across the past 12 La Liga meetings between Real Madrid and Barcelona, there have been five Barca wins, four Real Madrid wins and three draws.Each of the previous five meetings in all competitions have produced over 2.5 goals, including Barcelona’s 4-0 victory at the Bernabeu back in March.
Real Madrid will be without the injured duo of Thibaut Courtois and Dani Ceballos on Sunday. Antonio Rudiger is also a doubt.
On the flip side, Barca’s extensive injury list contains Jules Kounde, Memphis Depay, Adreas Christensen, Hector Bellerin and Ronald Araujo.
Although both sides are locked on 22 points at the La Liga summit, few would argue that Barcelona have not been the best team in the league so far this season.