La Liga

Barcelona vs Real Madrid: TV channel, live stream, team news & prediction

Max Parsons
Another meeting between these two famous rivals
Another meeting between these two famous rivals / Eric Alonso/GettyImages
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One of the biggest games in world football takes place on Sunday afternoon, with Barcelona and Real Madrid taking centre stage in La Liga.

Ronald Koeman's team have found some form at the right moment, putting disheartening defeats to Benfica and Atletico Madrid behind them with significant victories against Valencia and Dynamo Kyiv in their previous two matches.

La Blaugrana, however, have generally had a comparatively disastrous start to the campaign having won just four of their opening eight league fixtures overall.

Carlo Ancelotti's Real side will come into the clash with high hopes, currently sitting three points behind first place Real Sociedad (having played one game fewer) after a strong beginning to 2021/22 - despite having lost two in their last three.

Disappointing 2-1 losses to both Sheriff Tiraspol and Espanyol before the international break were soon forgotten, though, as Los Blancos romped to a 5-0 win away at Shakhtar Donetsk in midweek, putting in a frighteningly blistering collective performance.

Here's 90min's preview of El Clasico.


How to watch Barcelona vs Real Madrid on TV

FC Barcelona v Dinamo Kiev: Group E - UEFA Champions League
Barcelona's Camp Nou will host its 88th El Clasico / David Ramos/GettyImages

What time is kick off? Sunday 24 October, 15:15 (BST)/16:15 (CEST)
Where is it being played? Camp Nou, Barcelona
TV channel? Premier Sports 1/LaLigaTV (UK), fuboTV (US)
Referee? Jose Maria Sanchez Martinez
VAR? Jose Luis Gonzalez Gonzalez


Barcelona team news

Barcelona came away from their Champions League game with Dynamo on Wednesday night with an injury concern. Jordi Alba was visibly struggling with an ankle issue late on and will be a minor doubt for El Clasico - if he's fit, however, he will certainly play.

Sergio Aguero has come off the bench in Barcelona's two previous outings and, while a start may not come too far in the future, his inclusion from the outset for this one is unlikely.

Elsewhere, things remain the same for Koeman. Ronald Araujo, Martin Braithwaite, Ousmane Dembele and Pedri will all be absent for the hosts, while Ansu Fati's game time will continue to be managed on his impactful return from injury.

Given his influence since coming back into the fold, however, the 18-year-old is expected to be given a start on Sunday following the announcement of a long-term contract extension.


Real Madrid team news

Ancelotti should have a similar squad to that of Tuesday night to choose from. The injury-prone Eden Hazard may well be brought back into the squad, although remains a doubt through struggling with fatigue.

Gareth Bale is a certain absentee, while Luka Jovic and Isco will also miss out again. Dani Carvajal is again a doubt to feature despite resuming outdoor training with the rest of his colleagues on Thursday.

Both Luka Modric and Toni Kroos lasted just shy of 80 minutes as Los Blancos travelled to Kyiv in midweek, which could open the door to Federico Valverde to combat sluggishness in central midfield.

Meanwhile, Ferland Mendy made his first appearance in five months in that European victory and, having returned seamlessly, could be in line for another start on Sunday. Marcelo, who appeared as a substitute at Shakhtar, is another option at left-back in what would be his 32nd Clasico.


Barcelona vs Real Madrid predicted lineups

Barcelona: Ter Stegen; Dest, Pique, Garcia, Alba; Busquets, De Jong, Gavi; Coutinho, Depay, Fati

Real Madrid: Courtois; Vazquez, Militao, Alaba, Mendy; Casemiro, Valverde, Kroos; Rodrygo, Benzema, Vinicius Jr


Barcelona vs Real Madrid head to head record

This will be the 247th competitive meeting between these two seismic rivals.

Luis Figo's return to Camp Nou, Ronaldinho's Santiago Bernabeu standing ovation and, of course, the long-standing dominance of Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo - this fixture has had its fair share of headline moments and stories.

FBL-ESP-LIGA-REALMADRID-BARCELONA
The hallmark of Barcelona vs Real Madrid for so long / DANI POZO/GettyImages

Overall, Real Madrid narrowly come out with a better record, boasting 98 wins compared to Barcelona's 96 in 246 encounters (52 draws).

Specifically at Camp Nou - opened in 1958 - the Catalan giants have come out on top 44 times, losing 22 and drawing 21 of the 87 previous ties to have taken place at one of football's most famous cathedrals.

A clash between the two managers themselves is somewhat of a collector's item. This will, of course, be the first time they face each other in El Clasico and only the fifth time overall. The first four came as Ancelotti's AC Milan beat Koeman's Ajax three times and drew once in consecutive Champions League campaigns between 2002 and 2004.


Barcelona vs Real Madrid prediction

El Clasico is usually one of the most fiercely contested matches in the footballing calendar. The burning engine of passion and outright quality that once fuelled these two great sides has somewhat dwindled in recent times, however.

Barca head into the tie having looked despondent, lifeless and simply unhappy in the early stages of the 2021/22 season - Fati's reintroduction, however, has picked the group up somewhat.

For Real, meanwhile, the past 18 months have been largely depressing, although a strong start to the campaign under Ancelotti has reinvigorated the squad to the extent that their trophy-less 2020/21 could soon become a distant memory - plus, Karim Benzema is relentless at the moment.

So, with the two sides on a high - one more than the other, admittedly - we could witness a livelier Clasico than originally anticipated.

Real Madrid go into Sunday's clash as favourites, having enjoyed a significantly more promising start to the campaign.

Barcelona will hope to have a full capacity Camp Nou crowd to spur them on although, should Ancelotti's men to prove to be the collective behemoth they were on Tuesday, they should be too much for a Blaugrana side largely lacking in inspiration throughout the season thus far.

Prediction: Barcelona 1-3 Real Madrid

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