While Barcelona and Real Madrid battle for first place in La Liga, Villarreal and Athletic Bilbao are hoping for a Top 4 finish to the season. The two teams tangle on April 7, so tune in when they hit the pitch at 2:45 PM ET.
While it’s unlikely that either Athletic Bilbao and Villarreal will take the league championship from Real Madrid or Barcelona, the teams can still have a strong finish to the season. Both teams hope to rack up three points when Bilbao heads to Estadio de La Ceramica (aka El Madrigal) to meet Villarreal on their home turf.
With only eight weeks of play left in La Liga’s 2016-17 season, there are fewer and fewer chances for either of these teams to crack the top 4. Villareal, at fifth place, and Bilbao, at sixth place, are knocking on the door, hoping to get in. Standing in their way are Sevilla and Atletico Madrid. Sevilla takes on the lagging Deportivo while Atletico Madrid faces a cross-town derby against Real. It’s possible that Atletico could tumble down if they don’t hold off Cristiano Ronaldo, 32, and his crew, but Sevilla should soar.
El Submarino Amarillo’s hopes of making the top four were practically sunk after suffering a pair of back-to-back losses to Las Palmas and Eibar. Villarreal was kept scoreless in their fight with Las Palmas, but Robert Soriano, 26, wasn’t going to let his team be held to a clean sheet for two games in a row. He drew first blood in the match against Eibar, and though he scored the final goal, it wasn’t enough. Pedro Leon, 30, Kike, 27, and Takashi Inui, 28, all found the net before the final whistle was blown.
Villarreal rebounded, as Adrian Lopez, 29, led the Yellow Submarines over Real Betis, 1-0, on April 4. Meanwhile, Athletic Bilbao also struggled during the March fixtures. Los Leones fell to Sevilla and Real Madrid, pushing the team further down the table. However, a 2-1 win over Osasuna and a 2-0 victory over Espanyol kept Los Leones’s dreams of a Top 4 finish alive.
Do you think either of these teams will finish within the top 4 of La Liga’s table, HollywoodLifers?