There are less than three weeks left until the start of the 2011/2012 La Liga season, with defending champions FC Barcelona travelling to the home of the much-improved Malaga CF on the Opening Day. The Catalans have won the past three leagues in somewhat comfortable fashion and they'll be looking to equal the club record (set by Johan Cruyff's Dream Team) of four consecutive league titles. But if winning three in a row is fantastic, winning four is a monumental task.
Under the tutelage of José Mourinho and with the most expensively assembled squad in football history, Real Madrid will do everything in their power to put an end to the Catalan dominance.
But the title race isn't the only interesting thing happening in La Liga: The race for Champions League and Europa League spots, as well as the battle to avoid relegation, promise to be exciting as well. Besides, even those who don't follow La Liga will be curious to know just how far Malaga can go this season, after their mega investment during the summer.
Here are 13 predictions for the coming season in Spanish football:
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