By James Snedaker and Ivan Avalos
Barcelona vs Atletico Madrid (La Liga)
An excellent Atletico side will travel to treble winners Barcelona on Saturday in what looks to be an instant classic. These two sides make up the top two spots in the Spanish top flight, with Barcelona just edging out Madrid on goal difference, so this match should have massive implications for the title race. Barcelona are undefeated in their last 13 matches in La Liga while Atletico have only lost one of their last 10 in the league. Both sides played midweek in the Copa del Rey with Atletico suffering a disappointing defeat at home to Celta de Vigo while Barcelona easily handled Athletic Bilbao.
Both sides don’t have any injuries to key players, so expect two world class lineups. The unstoppable trio of Neymar, Suarez, and Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi are guarantees up front for Barcelona, expect at least one of them to get on the scoresheet. For Atletico, Frenchman Antoine Griezmann should start up front while reliable center back pairing Godín and Giménez should be the two players in the middle of defence.
Atletico have been a good side this season, but don’t expect them to win this match. Barcelona are the top side in the world right now and their attacking trio is one of the best in the history of the Blaugrana. Especially at home in the Camp Nou, don’t expect a blowout, but expect a Barcelona win.
Prediction: 3-1 win for Barcelona
Saturday, January 30th at 10am on beIN Sports
Liverpool vs West Ham (FA Cup)
Liverpool will need to improve greatly if they want to come out of this match with a win. They had a good week having passed on to final in the Capital One Cup from penalty kicks against Stoke City, while the Hammers go into this fixture losing just one of their last 11 competitive fixtures. That loss came from Newcastle starting the New Year. West Ham have also proven to have great performances against the big teams during the regular season league.
Liverpool will rest some of their key players such as Alberto Moreno, Clyne, Lallana, and Mignolet. Sam Byram, West Hams newest signing, will be ineligible for this game having already played in the competition with Leeds United. They will also be without Lanzini, Sakho, and Carroll.
In the previous six matches the results are split even with Liverpool having won three and West Ham having won three. This fixture looks to very open for both teams but West Ham look to have a bit of an advantage as they are looking to play a more competitive starting 11 then Liverpool do.
Prediction: 2-1 win for West Ham
Saturday, January 30th at 12:30pm on Fox Sports 2