Classic to continue up in Euroleague

Real Madrid and Barça, tied for victories in Europe, meet again at the WiZink Center


Real Madrid and Barça will experience a new Clásico this Thursday at the WiZink Center (7:00 p.m.), this time in the 2022-2023 Euroleague Regular Phase in which both are tied on wins and with the aim of continuing in the group of co-leaders

Only 23 days have passed since the Barca team opened 2023 with a solid 78-87 victory at the Palacio, the second in their favor this season after the one achieved at the Palau in the first round of the top continental competition by 75 -73 and Llull’s three-pointer missed at the buzzer. Before, in the Super Cup, the victory was Real Madrid’s.

Since then, the qualifying equality between the two has been maintained. Chus Mateo’s men recovered and went on to win five in a row, a streak that came to a halt last Friday in a discreet match in the always complicated visit to Olympiacos (73-60). Sarunas Jasikevicius’ men did not take advantage of it to leave some irregularity that is accompanying them and added two defeats, both in the Euroleague and at home against Virtus (75-83) and Efes (75-80).

Now, in a match that is always special and different, Real Madrid and Barça will look for a victory that will ensure they continue with the group of four co-leaders. In a Regular Phase of maximum equality, the two teams of the Endesa League march with 13-7 together with Olympiacos and Fenerbahce, but with the first eleven classified in a margin of three victories, so that each one is already beginning to be worth its weight in gold

In this sense, the ten-time European champion will try to assert a ‘court factor’ that is not weighing too much this year in the competition against a rival who defeated him on his last two European visits and who seems to have taken off some of his ‘ghosts’ after having lost the dominance in the Classics that he had held after the arrival of Jasikevicius.

The Catalans know that a large part of their options go through controlling the rebound against the best team in the competition in that facet, but the one they neutralized in their last game despite the efforts of Walter Tavares. That day, the locals experienced a ‘bleed’ in attack (16), something that was repeated in Piraeus (14), and that they will have to correct in order to impose the rhythm they like the most.

In addition, Barça showed their good potential in that facet last week in their victory in a difficult place like the Fernando Buesa Arena, where they caught 18 rebounds in the Cazoo Baskonia ring that ended up being key to their 78-85 victory. the third consecutive away.

The Lithuanian coach knows that controlling the boards and offering his best defensive intensity to reduce the attack of the Madridistas are essential to have options against an opponent who will also need better aim from the three-pointer after a dismal 3/25 against Olympiacos and Control the losses that sometimes weigh you down.

Chus Mateo recovers the American point guard Nigel Williams-Goos, so he will only have Alberto Abalde out for this match, while Jasikevicius has his entire squad available except for the long-term injured Sergi Martínez and will have to make his discards. Last Sunday, in the victory against Surne Bilbao Basket, he rested Jan Vesely, who also did not play in Vitoria, and Cory Higgins, key in the victory at the beginning of the month.



REAL MADRID: Williams-Goss, Causeur, Musa, Yabusele and Tavares — possible starting quintet — Llull, Poirier, Cornelie, Hezonja, Deck, Rudy Fernandez, Sergio Rodriguez and Ndiaye.

BARÇA: Satoransky, Laprovittola, Kalinic, Mirotic and Sanli –possible starting five–; Kuric, Abrines, Vesely, Da Silva, Higgins, Tobey, Jokubaitis, Paulí and Nnaji.

–REFEREES: Radovic, Bissang and Hordov.

–PAVILION: WiZink Center.

–TIME: 19.00/DAZN.