La Liga leaders Barcelona will look to continue their unbeaten league start as they take on Real Madrid in the first El Clasico since August. Madrid are 11 points behind their great rivals but have played a game fewer and have just been crowned Club World Cup champions.
Where and when: Santiago Bernabeu – 23 December, kick-off 12:00
Where you can see Real Madrid v Barcelona: Sky Sports, bet365 live streaming
Last time: Madrid won both legs of the Spanish Supercopa at the start of the season, triumphing 3-1 at Camp Nou before a 2-0 home victory. The last league meeting was a pulsating 3-2 victory for Barca at the Bernabeu in April, with Lionel Messi snatching a last minute winner.
Real Madrid v Barcelona Predictions and Preview
El Clasico fixtures are not only the biggest fixtures within Spain but on a global scale, with tens of millions tuning in worldwide to watch the two illustrious giants go toe-to-toe.
Barca boost an 11-point advantage of their rivals but have played a game more and a home victory here would propel Zinedine Zidane’s side back into the title race.
The visitors have only dropped points on three occasions this season – trips to Atletico Madrid and Valencia alongside hosting Celta Vigo – but this looks set to be their biggest challenge to date.
Madrid won both legs of the Spanish Supercopa convincingly back in August and will be hoping for a repeat while Ernesto Valverde’s side have not lost in any competition since those clashes.
The hosts are slight favourites for this game at odds of 11/10 while Barca are priced at 12/5 and the draw available at 3/1.
Gareth Bale, Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema are all fit and could start alongside each other for the first time since April.
Barca look likely to partner Thomas Vermaelen with Gerard Pique in defence due to injuries to Samuel Umtiti and Javier Mascherano, while striker Paco Alcacer is injured.
One to watch for Real Madrid: Cristiano Ronaldo has already netted 16 club goals this season, particularly impressive after missing five games through suspension. With eight goals in his last seven appearances alone, he is 11/13 to score anytime in this clash.
One to watch for Barcelona: Lionel Messi has netted three goals in his last three visits to the Bernabeu including his last minute winner in April and having scored 18 goals this campaign to date, is 21/20 to score anytime here.
Long shot: All five meetings between the league’s top four this season have ended as draws, with little to separate the sides. There hasn’t been a scoreless El Clasico since April 2011 and a repeat of that this time around is 25/1.