Real Madrid again came through on the biggest stage against one of the biggest clubs in world football—delivering a powerful 2-1 win over rivals Barcelona.
The win came only days after they had defeated the Catalan club 3-1 at the Nou Camp in the Copa del Rey semifinals—thus ending Barca's chance to a treble in 2013—and only two weeks after an incredible 1-1 draw against Manchester United in the UEFA Champions League.
Jose Mourinho's side will now look forward to that epic clash full of confidence and self-belief that they can triumph over the English league leaders at Old Trafford.
After all, they have won big on both of their two key matches this week. What's to suggest that they can't complete the three-peat against the Red Devils?
Barcelona will once again be called into question for allowing simple goals again in this one—especially Sergio Ramos' game-winner—with La Blaugrana conceding a goal for the 12th game in succession as well as 11 goals in total over their last four matches.
Yet the focus of the El Clasico, much like the one during the week, was not on the Catalan club, despite the possession and time in attack that they had. The focus was solely on Madrid, who once again delivered when they needed to most—something that seemed so distant from their performances at the start of the year when they went winless through their first three games.
Whilst that tournament is done and dusted in 2013, Madrid will know that the Champions League is still very much an option this year and certainly up for grabs. They'll know that the match against United holds the key for them to have any real success this season, and Los Blancos should approach it with the mentality that they would a final or even an El Clasico.
The Red Devils certainly won't be a pushover, having troubled the Spanish champions greatly when they played at the Bernabeu earlier in the year. United have conceded just two goals in their last five matches (showing that they have the form needed to succeed right now) and have not been beaten in any competition since early December 2012.
But, having said that, there is simply no team in world football currently riding the momentum high that Madrid is after back-to-back El Clasico victories.
They will be completely sure and convinced that they can defeat United at home, given the fact that they defeated Barca without their strongest team on hand.
Defeating United would not only keep Madrid's season alive in the tournament, but it would also be the perfect end to an incredible week for Los Blancos. Few schedules have been more daunting than the one presented to Mourinho's men, and so far, they have passed with flying colors.
Manchester United stand as the final challenge to overcome, with their UEFA Champions League match shaping as one of the biggest fixtures of them all.
Especially if Madrid walk away with a victory.
Do you think Real Madrid can beat Manchester United this week?
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