Barcelona host Real Madrid at Camp Nou in an El Clasico that could decide the fate of the La Liga title race earlier than expected. Xavi’s men are nine points ahead of second-place Los Blancos. A win will virtually put Barca out of their fierce rivals’ reach, and a defeat at home could put on pressure that might prove to be too much for the relatively inexperienced side.
Despite the absence of Ousmane Dembélé and Pedri, Barcelona are favourites to win all three points on Sunday night. And the mood in the camp ahead of the game is pretty relaxed. Their preparations ahead of the clash indicate the same.
In fact, Xavi took the opportunity to give a teenager some experience with the first team. As per SPORT, 15-year-old goalkeeper Eder Aller trained with the seniors on Saturday.
At the moment, the highly-rated talent is very far from being named in the senior squad, especially for a game of this magnitude. But regardless, any kind of experience with the first team will go a long way in fast-tracking the young goalkeeper’s development.
Surprise player with the Barcelona squad ahead of Real Madrid game
For now, the spotlight will be on Aller’s senior, Marc-André ter Stegen. The German goalkeeper has been the club’s most important player this season, producing a string of phenomenal saves to help his side engineer several 1-0 results this season.
Barcelona had to dig deep to earn a 1-0 advantage over Real Madrid in the first leg of the Copa del Rey semi-final early this month. This time, their defence will hope to get more support from their attack: a bigger cushion to see out the game.
Considering the options Carlo Ancelotti has going forward, it won’t be easy for Barcelona to keep them quiet in the second straight El Clasico.