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La Liga Preview: Title up for grabs for Real Madrid

2 May 2012 02:43

Cristiano Ronaldo will be keen to wrap up the La Liga title for Real Madrid on Wednesday and take a big step towards the Pichichi trophy.

Ronaldo is currently the top goal-scorer in La Liga with 42 goals for the season but he is being heavily challenged by Barcelona's Lionel Messi.

Messi scored twice in Barcelona's 7-0 victory over Rayo Vallecano on Sunday to move within one goal of Ronaldo as the Real striker hit the back of the net just once in his side's 3-0 win over Sevilla.

Atletico Madrid's Falcao is third in the Pichichi with 22 goals, while Ronaldo's Real team-mates Gonzalo Higuain (21) and Karim Benzema (18) round out the top five.

Real lead Barcelona by seven points in La Liga and know if they defeat Athletic Bilbao this week the title will be theirs.

Even if Jose Mourinho's side does slip up against Bilbao, it will not be easy for Barcelona to capitalise as they host Malaga.

The fourth-placed club in Spain defeated Valencia 1-0 on Sunday and need to keep winning to maintain their run towards the European Champions League next season.

In Barcelona's favour, however, is that Malaga have not beaten them since the south-coast club returned to La Liga in the 2008/09 season.

If Malaga do lose it will open the door for Levante to take fourth spot as they travel to take on Real Zaragoza.

Valencia would also benefit from a Barcelona victory as they could move three points clear in third with a victory against Osasuna.

On Tuesday, Sporting Gijon and Villarreal go head-to-head in their respective quests to avoid relegation.

Villarreal are on 38 points and sit just above Gijon who are in the relegation zone.

But if Gijon win at home they will move to 37 points and have a big chance of catching Villarreal with two games to go in the season.

In other matches Tuesday, Getafe host Racing Santander and Granada face Espanyol.

While on Wednesday, Sevilla host Real Betis in a local derby, Atletico Madrid play Real Sociedad and Mallorca are up against Rayo Vallecano.

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