With so many attractive fixtures on the schedule, Matchday 16 of the 2023/24 LALIGA EA SPORTS season could be one of the most entertaining rounds of the entire year. There are big clashes between teams near the top of the table, such as third-placed FC Barcelona vs second-placed Girona FC or seventh-placed Real Betis vs leaders Real Madrid, as well as individual duels to look out for, like Isco taking on former midfield partner Toni Kroos or Oriol Romeu meeting his former Girona FC teammates.
The very first match of the weekend has an interesting storyline of its own, as José Bordalás leads his Getafe CF side against his former club Valencia CF on Friday night. These two teams have been involved in some fiercely competitive matches in recent years and Geta will be looking to maintain their excellent home record, as they haven’t lost at the Coliseum since April.
In the first of Saturday’s games, Deportivo Alavés and UD Las Palmas will meet up in a fixture that will bring back happy memories for the Canary Islanders. It was against the Basque side in the final round of last year’s LALIGA HYPERMOTION regular season that UD Las Palmas secured promotion with a goalless draw, before Deportivo Alavés triumphed in the playoffs to make this reunion possible.
At 4.15pm CET on Saturday, Real Betis and Real Madrid will take centre stage at the Estadio Benito Villamarín for a very intriguing duel. Even though both teams have had many injuries in recent weeks, they have each showcased their squad depth and maintained good runs of form. That is especially true of Isco, who continues to play at such a high level and who will relish this chance to take on his former club.
Immediately afterwards, there is a meeting of two other teams who qualified for European football last season, as Villarreal CF host Real Sociedad. Several of the top Spanish talents will be taking part in this one, as Gerard Moreno, Álex Baena and co. go up against the likes of Mikel Oyarzabal, Mikel Merino and Martín Zubimendi.
On Saturday night, Sevilla FC will visit RCD Mallorca searching for their first away win of this LALIGA EA SPORTS season. Nemanja Gudelj will travel with confidence, as he returns to the site of the wonder goal he scored when Sevilla FC won in the Balearic Islands last season.
Atlético de Madrid and UD Almería will then meet in the first of Sunday’s four fixtures, with Atleti in excellent form at home and seeking what would be a 19th win in a row at the Estadio Cívitas Metropolitano.
New Granada CF coach Alexander Medina will have his first home game with his new club, as they take on an in-form Athletic Club side. Interestingly, this will be a meeting between the coach with the most LALIGA EA SPORTS matches under his belt, in Ernesto Valverde, and the manager with the fewest, as Medina coaches his team in Spain’s top flight for just the second time.
Cádiz CF and CA Osasuna are two teams who desperately need a victory, and they’ll square off on Sunday evening at the Estadio Nuevo Mirandilla. Both sides have quality players, especially in attack, but haven’t managed to grind out victories of late.
Then, at 9pm CET on Sunday, it’ll be time for the most interesting FC Barcelona vs Girona FC match ever. This Catalan derby has always been intriguing, but never before have the two clubs been so close in the standings. It’s Girona FC who enter this duel four points ahead of Barça in the table, but Xavi’s squad will feel confident after their recent victory over Atlético de Madrid. It should be a thriller at the Estadi Olímpic.
The final game of the matchday takes place in Vallecas, where Rayo Vallecano will come up against RC Celta. Isi Palazón and Iago Aspas are two of the most creative players in the competition this term and will each look to lead their squad to a Monday night victory.