Rayo Vallecano v Barcelona, Sunday 20:30
To say that it had been a tough week for Barcelona would be an understatement but the Spanish giants will be aspiring to make the most of what’s left of their league campaign as Betfred hand out free bets and big odds on Rayo Vallecano triumphing over the Catalonians on Sunday.
Following their bow from this season’s Champions League at the hands of Chelsea, the club were hit with the news that Pep Guardiola would be leaving at the end of the campaign, claiming his need for a rest as a hefty factor in the decision.
If anything, the players will perform in honour of their coach in the remainder of their games under his charge before the former Spanish international eventually takes his leave.
With a seven-point gap currently between them and first placed Real Madrid, Barca look unlikely to retain the Spanish league crown unless Los Merengues slip up considerably in their coming fixtures.
In a very strange run of form for the current champions, Barcelona have failed to record a victory in three consecutive matches and although Rayo Vallecano may not pose the biggest threat, won’t be taking any result for granted come Sunday.
Rayo Vallecano find themselves in a relatively safe position of 15th but top flight survival isn’t yet assured and the Madrid club will be seeking to upset the odds when they host Barca this weekend.
A win for the hosts would ensure Primera Division football for the 2012-13 campaign and while Barcelona’s star-studded side obviously have a better grade of player, it’s often these occasions that can provide the fans with the biggest upsets.
With the league title seemingly out of their grasp, it wouldn’t be a surprise if Guardiola chose to blood some of the youngsters with the Barça camp in his waning days at the Camp Nou.
The Catalans have a Copa Del Rey final against Athletic Bilbao and, as a result, won’t be keen on injuring any key players in an otherwise rudimentary visit to Rayo Vallecano.