Real Sociedad vs. Valencia vs. Malaga vs. Real Betis: La Liga's Race for 4th
After 90 minutes of hard work against Valencia at Anoeta two weeks ago, Real Sociedad have contrived to undo that good in 180 minutes of inconsistency since.
Granada stung them with a last-minute equalizer Monday night, while they came undone at Getafe the previous Monday, losing 2-1 despite taking the lead.
On the other hand, Los Che's defeat in San Sebastian has spurred them to produce 180 minutes of liquid football, picking up back-to-back 4-0 wins.
La Real, with three games left, still have the edge over Valencia, but it is only their head-to-head record against them that keeps them in fourth place now—the final Champions League spot.
Five points back are Malaga, who have one game less left and now only remain in the battle for fourth courtesy of mathematics—the same applies for Real Betis.
Let's take a look at what's to come in the battle for the pot of gold at the bottom of the Champions League rainbow.
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Real Madrid (H)
Deportivo La Coruna (A)
A 15-game unbeaten streak, and one defeat in 23, accelerated la Real five points ahead of Valencia with just five to play.
One defeat and one draw since, and it looks as if Philippe Montanier's side may have just got wobbly knees at the wrong time.
The absence of talented midfielder Asier Illarramendi has been telling in the last two matches, and they will hope he can recover from his thigh muscle strain for the run in.
But with two away games and a tricky home match against Real Madrid, it looks unlikely they'll take maximum points now that thoughts of Champions League qualification have become real.
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Other than their 4-2 defeat to Real Sociedad, Valencia have won three of their last four games and have lost just twice in 15.
After a sluggish start under Mauricio Pellegrino, the appointment of Ernesto Valverde has seen them accelerate back toward the Top Four.
Roberto Soldado is enjoying his most prolific season in a Los Che shirt, and he'll be heavily fancied to score the goals to take Valencia to the destination their finances so desperately require: the Champions League.
Getafe and Sevilla are both still in with a shot at Europe, while Granada are battling at the bottom, but you'd expect Valencia to take more points from these games than la Real will from theirs.
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Deportivo La Coruna (H)
Since Champions League elimination, Malaga have been found wanting.
They are exhausted from their impressive exertion throughout the year and are hardly spurred on by the fact that they're likely to be banned from Europe next season.
To take fourth spot they'd need to win both their remaining fixtures and hope both Valencia and Real Sociedad lose their three games.
Instead, they'll be looking over their shoulder, where Real Betis—two points back and with a game in hand—look likely to jump ahead of them
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Real Zaragoza (H)
Like Malaga, it's only through the use of a calculator that Real Betis can be kept in the hunt for fourth spot.
Pepe Mel's side have performed well throughout the season though, and at one point landing a place in the Top Four didn't look too unrealistic.
Their immediate matches are against sides struggling at the bottom, while their final match is against a Levante side who've not performed throughout 2013.
Los Beticos will be happy to stay above city rivals Sevilla, so to jump above Malaga and finish sixth would be a fantastic achievement.