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The Big One: El Clasico

If last weekend was the weekend to watch the Premier League, this weekend is the reason to watch La Liga for one game and one game only: El Clasico.

The most previous meeting between the two sides earlier in the season saw Luis Suarez just return from a ban imposed by FIFA for his bite in the World Cup and Real run out dominant 3-1 winners and begin their long run at the top of the table. Real would go on to set the Spanish record for consecutive wins across all competitions, culminating in their Club World Cup triumph.
My, what a difference a few months make. Real boss Carlo Ancelotti is under increasing pressure as Real slip up on almost every front. What arguably started at their loss and elimination from the Copa del Rey at the hands of Atletico Madrid has snowballed since then. Bar his two goals against Levante in last weekendโ€™s win, Gareth Bale was wildly out of form and at the centre of a beating from Spanish press. Real also went on to drop 2 games in the league and barely squeak into the Champions League quarterfinals, dropping the second leg 3-4 in the process to a mid-table Bundesliga Schalke (their 2-0 first leg win proving the difference).
In the meantime Barcelona are finally starting to click. A Copa del Rey Final calls for them after they blew Valencia away in the competition and they also own a commanding 2-1 aggregate lead going into their 2nd leg of their Champions League tie at home to Manchester City, a side newly beaten by 19th place Burnley.
What this means is that the El Clasico this weekend will have the feeling of all to play for, and certainly with the two teams in opposite form it could prove to be true. The one point gap between the two sides at the top coming into the fixture is certainly subject to change.

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@CitySarajevo That may be true but that's why this is such a big game. Real win puts them back in front with less than two months left.
@Spudsy2061 Maybe, but Barcelona have been more consistent.
@GermanBumbleBee Going to be a fantastic game indeed. @CitySarajevo Think you might be jumping the gun there a bit but Barcelona would be hard pressed to lost the title from there if they do nab all three points.
Going to be a great game.
Think Barcelona might have this.
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I'm Ashamed of My Hometown
San Diego, get your shit together. Each year at the Padres stadium, Petco Park, the LGBT society in SD holds an event called "Out at the Park" that is meant to bring the community together for an evening of baseball. This year, Petco Park really, really screwed up. The San Diego Men's Gay Chorus was meant to sing the national anthem before the game to represent the LGBT community for this event. Their voices were never heard. The stadium let them take the field, and then as they were about to sing, a recorded female voice instead sang the anthem (which, if you've been to a Padres game, isn't something that happens - we always have live singing) The men had to walk off the field hearing people shouting profane, homophobic things at them. The Padres said it was a mistake, a technical error, a third party contractor, and that they were sorry. But that doesn't explain the other examples of mistreatment. Days prior to the game, the Padres organization told the performers that the chorus would have to pay for their tickets in order to sing. This is not something that happens, ever. If you perform the national anthem, you get to enter the park for free, DUH. Why did the Padres suddenly want this now? That would have cost the small organization thousands of dollars, and after dispute they were finally allowed in as performers. You can listen to their great voices here when they performed in 2015. It's a pity their voices weren't heard this year. Get it together Padres, you're a disappointment in baseball but don't be a disappointment to your entire community.