Analysis: Four things we learned in Spain's Matchday 30-Xinhua

Analysis: Four things we learned in Spain's Matchday 30

Source: Xinhua

Editor: huaxia

2024-04-01 19:12:17

MADRID, April 1 (Xinhua) -- Real Madrid maintained their eight-point lead at the top of La Liga this weekend in Spain, while Barcelona just kept in touch. At the bottom, Almeria and Granada look doomed, while Cadiz gave themselves a slim lifeline.

1. Rodrygo shows his worth

The more than likely arrival of Kylian Mbappe to Real Madrid this summer, along with Brazil international Endrick, is going to provoke an overbooking in the Real Madrid attack, with some players under threat.

Joselu is likely to leave at the end of his loan from Espanyol and Rodrygo could also be under pressure, with plenty of teams willing to pay big money for the Brazilian forward.

However, if he is in the departure lounge, Rodrygo isn't leaving without a fight, as his two excellent goals against Athletic Bilbao showed on Sunday.

His first was a run and shot into the top corner after eight minutes, while his second saw him beat the offside trap, cut inside and score at the near post.

It's true that Athletic was playing with one eye on next week's Cup final, but Rodrygo's message is that he wants to stay.

2. Barcelona keeps up the pressure

FC Barcelona made hard work of beating 10-man Las Palmas on Saturday night, with Raphinha's second-half goal all that separated the two sides.

The Brazilian looks to be on his way out of the club in the summer as Barca looks to make room for new signings, but he has scored some important goals in his two seasons with them.

Xavi Hernandez will be pleased with another clean sheet, and his side is now looking to the visit to the Santiago Bernabeu on April 21, which will show if they have any chance of retaining the title.

The fact that Inigo Martinez, Robert Lewandowski and Joao Cancelo all forced bookings which mean they are suspended for the upcoming visit to Cadiz but available for the Bernabeu shows the importance of the Clasico, providing they don't slip up in Cadiz.

3. Big win for Girona

Cristhian Stuani's 92nd-minute goal, which was given after a long VAR check, gave Girona a 3-2 win at home to Real Betis after an exciting 90 minutes, which also saw Artem Dovbyk score twice for the home side.

The win, coupled with Athletic Bilbao's defeat in Madrid, means Girona has a nine-point cushion over fourth place, with eight games left this season.

Girona still has some tricky games left to play against Atletico Madrid and Barcelona, but that should be enough of a cushion to ensure a top-four finish and a place in next season's Champions League.

4. One relegation spot to be decided

If there was any slight doubt regarding Almeria and Granada's relegation to the second division at the end of this season, it was ended decisively at the weekend.

Almeria's first win of the season away to Las Palmas was shown to be a false dawn as they were easily beaten 3-0 at home to Osasuna, while Granada lost a make-or-break visit to third-from-bottom Cadiz.

That defeat leaves Granada 14 points from safety, and although they have a game in hand at home to Valencia on Thursday, that is too much to make up.

Cadiz gave themselves a lifeline with their win over Granada, but they have to play Barcelona, Girona and Real Madrid in April, and that isn't a reason to be optimistic.