We are set for the first international break for the new season as La Liga goes into a short hiatus, in light of the upcoming UEFA Nations League.
The title race in the Spanish top flight is already heating up thanks to Barcelona’s blistering start to the campaign. With 16 points on the board, the Catalans are only behind Real Madrid at the top of the table.
Barça have dropped points only once this season, which came in the opening day fixture against Rayo Vallecano. Since then, they have gone on to win five back-to-back matches. Their most recent triumph came in the 3-0 ousting of Elche.
In the aftermath of the victory, Xavi has voiced his optimism regarding his team’s chances of landing the league title this season, ahead of their arch-rivals Real Madrid.
“This year we’re closer [to winning the league], I think so,” said the Barcelona coach as reported by El Chiringuito, to his Real Madrid counterpart Carlo Ancelotti. The two coaches met at an event yesterday.
Barça, though, have a long way to go and must remain extremely consistent if they are to keep up with Los Blancos. The club from the capital have managed to maintain a 100% winning record in the league so far, with their latest victory coming against cross-town rivals Atletico Madrid.
The upcoming international break could be critical for Barcelona, with a host of their players currently plying their trade with their respective national teams.
They are all running the risk of picking up injuries that could prove consequential for the Catalans, even though the club’s new training regime has significantly improved the player’s fitness routines this season.
Real Madrid, for their part, have also managed to avoid injuries so far this campaign and have coped well with the loss of Karim Benzema. But the loss of any key player could lead to some serious repercussions, especially ahead of the strenuous October schedule.