New Delhi, June 27 (Ajit Weekly News) On Thursday afternoon, the draw for the new LaLiga calendar was held in Madrid and now everybody knows the fixtures of the 38 matchdays of the 2023/24 season of Spain’s top division, the 93rd edition of the competition.
There are several fascinating fixtures and derby matches to circle in the calendar, starting in Matchday 1, which will be held on the weekend of August 11 to August 14.
A look at ten of those fixtures to look out for.
Matchday 1 (Weekend of August 13): UD Las Palmas vs RCD Mallorca
At the start of every new season, there is always a buzz around the newly promoted teams and this year Deportivo Alaves, Granada CF and UD Las Palmas make their returns to the top flight. In the case of Los Amarillos, this is a long-awaited event as they’ll play in the top division for the first time since 2018. The first top-flight match in the Canary Islands in five years will be against another island side, as RCD Mallorca will make that trip on the opening weekend.
Matchday 2 (Weekend of August 20): FC Barcelona vs Cadiz CF
While construction work takes place at the Spotify Camp Nou, FC Barcelona will play their 2023/24 home fixtures at the Estadi Olimpic Lluis Companys, located in the beautiful parks of Montjuic. It will be a unique sight to see Barça taking to the field as the home team at a different stadium and the first time they’ll do so will be in Matchday 2, when Cadiz CF come to town in the middle of August.
Matchday 6 (Weekend of September 24): Atletico de Madrid vs Real Madrid
With Atletico de Madrid very much a title contender, their head-to-head meetings with FC Barcelona and Real Madrid will be blockbuster events this season. Fans only have to wait until Matchday 6 to enjoy the next edition of the Madrid Derby, as Real Madrid will make the short trip to the Estadio Civitas Metropolitano at the end of September, looking to make it back-to-back wins there, after winning 2-1 on their visit last term.
Matchday 8 (Weekend of October 1): Real Sociedad vs Athletic Club
The Basque Derby is always one of the most special fixtures in Spanish football and the duels between Real Sociedad and Athletic Club have been particularly important in recent seasons as both clubs have been fighting in the top half of the table. Last season, La Real won 3-1 in their home derby, while the Bilbao side earned a 2-0 win when they hosted. In 2023/24, their first meeting will be in San Sebastian in Matchday 8, on the weekend of October 1st, before the return game in Bilbao in Matchday 20 on the weekend of January 14.
Matchday 10 (Weekend of October 22): Girona FC vs UD Almeria
In 2022/23, Girona FC were a joy to watch as Michel’s side played a very attacking brand of football. The Catalan club were involved in the two matches with the most goals in the season, a 6-2 win over UD Almería and a 5-3 loss to Real Sociedad. Considering Girona FC’s other clash with UD Almeria produced another five goals, when the Andalusian side won 3-2, the next duel between these two clubs is one to keep an eye on and that will take place on the weekend of October 22.
Matchday 11 (Weekend of October 29): FC Barcelona vs Real Madrid
ElClasico is the biggest match in world football and the next edition of the FC Barcelona vs Real Madrid rivalry will come in Matchday 11, on the weekend of October 29th, and it’ll be the first ElClasico held at Montjuic. Both sides won their home ElClasico in LaLiga Santander last campaign, with Los Blancos overcoming their historic foes 3-1 at the Bernabeu and Barça then winning 2-1 at the Spotify Camp Nou with a last-minute goal from Franck Kessie. This is a match that guarantees drama, so the countdown clock is ticking towards October.
Matchday 13 (Weekend of November 12): Sevilla FC vs Real Betis
Widely considered the most atmospheric derby in Europe, Sevilla FC vs Real Betis is always a joy to watch and even more so in recent years given that both clubs have been fighting for the same objectives. Their first duel of this campaign will take place at Sevilla FC’s Estadio Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan, where Los Verdiblancos haven’t won since 2018, when they conjured up a spectacular 5-3 away victory. The return game will then be held in Matchday 33 in the final weekend of April.
Matchday 15 (Weekend of December 3): FC Barcelona vs Atletico de Madrid
Over the second half of the 2022/23 season, the two best teams in terms of points collected were FC Barcelona with 43 and then Atletico de Madrid with 38, so their first meeting of the new campaign will be a fascinating watch. That duel will come on the first weekend of December and Diego Simeone will hope to achieve his first away league victory against Barca. He has never left the Spotify Camp Nou with a three-point haul as coach, but will look to do so on this visit to Montjuic.
Matchday 32 (Weekend of April 21): Real Madrid vs FC Barcelona
In most years, the second ElClasico of the league season is decisive in terms of the destination of the LaLiga trophy, so Spanish football fans will want to make sure they’re free to savour the Real Madrid vs FC Barcelona clash that will take place at the Bernabeu in Matchday 32, on the weekend of April 21st, 2024. That game will be taking place at the business end of the season, when every point matters more.
Matchday 38 (Weekend of May 26): Sevilla FC vs FC Barcelona
The LaLiga title race usually goes down to the wire and, if that is the case once again, the Sevilla FC vs FC Barcelona match on the final day of the season could be a game of huge importance. Any trip to the Estadio Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan is difficult, but even more so if there is pressure on Barca to take all three points. Elsewhere on the final day, Real Madrid will host Real Betis, while Atletico de Madrid will visit Real Sociedad, so none of the main title favourites will have it easy in Matchday 38.
–Ajit Weekly News
News Credits – I A N S