The Spanish title race is tight with nine games to go: Atletico Madrid sit top on 66 points, with Ronald Koeman’s Barca a point behind in second and Zinedine Zidane’s Real just three off Diego Simeone’s leaders in third.
LaLiga glory seemed beyond Real and Barca earlier this season, but Atletico’s inability to close things out has allowed the two Clasico rivals to hunt them down.
If teams are level on points in LaLiga come the end of the season, head-to-head record - not goal difference - decides the title, which makes this Clasico potentially decisive.
There is also the small matter of this potentially being Lionel Messi’s final Clasico: the Argentine talisman’s future is unclear beyond the summer, but there is no way that a player who has dominated so many of these mammoth contests in years gone by will want to sign off with anything less than three points and a star performance.
El Clasico date kick-off time and venue
Real Madrid vs Barcelona is scheduled for an 8pm GMT kick-off today, April 10, 2021.
The match will be held behind closed doors at Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano. Real’s Santiago Bernabeu stadium is undergoing renovation works, so Real’s reserve stadium is serving as their home base given no fans can attend during the coronavirus pandemic.
Where to watch El Clasico
Real Madrid vs Barcelona team news
Los Blancos captain Sergio Ramos is still out with a calf problem along with Dani Carvajal, while Eden Hazard has missed out on a return to the squad.
As for Barca, Gerard Pique and Sergi Roberto are doubts but could feature, while Philipp Coutinho and Ansu Fati are both out.
Real Madrid vs Barcelona starting lineups
Real Madrid XI: Courtois; Lucas Vazquez, Militao, Nacho, Mendy; Modric, Casemiro, Kroos; Valverde, Benzema, Vinicius
Barcelona XI: Ter Stegen; Mingueza, Aruajo, Lenglet; Dest, Busquets, Pedri, De Jong, Jordi Alba; Messi, Dembele.
Real Madrid vs Barcelona prediction
With so much at stake, both teams will fancy their chances of exposing defensive weaknesses. Real exploited a static Liverpool defence in midweek and Barca will have to be wary of pace in behind on the flanks, while Los Blancos will, as ever, have to find a way to stop the genius that is Messi. Expect goals.
Real Madrid vs Barcelona head to head (h2h) results
Real wins: 97
Barcelona wins: 96
Last meeting: Barcelona 1-3 Real Madrid (24/10/2020)
Real Madrid vs Barcelona odds and betting tips
Real win: 15/8
Barca win: 13/10
Messi to score 2 or more: 7/2
Odds via Betfair (subject to change). Click here to find out more.