Everything up for graps in Spain's La Liga except for title

Source: Xinhua| 2019-05-02 16:54:36|Editor: Yamei
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MADRID, May 2 (Xinhua) -- There is one issue already resolved ahead of the 36th round of matches in Spain's Liga Santander this weekend, but everything else still has to be decided.

FC Barcelona's 1-0 win over Levante last Saturday confirmed Ernesto Valverde's side as this season's Champions and Barca continued the feel-good factor on Wednesday when they put a foot in this season's Champions League final with a 3-0 win at home to Liverpool in another Leo Messi inspired master class.

Barca visit Celta Vigo on Saturday night and with the Champions League return leg next Tuesday, Barca coach Ernesto Valverde is likely to continue with his policy of squad rotations, which means there is a chance Messi, Luis Suarez and others will sit the game out.

That would be good news for Celta, who may have 37 points but are just two points above third bottom Valladolid and immersed in the battle to avoid relegation.

With nine sides theoretically still able to go down, the scramble to avoid the drop looks like going to the wire, but Leganes would almost certainly be safe if they can take a point from Friday's visit to play Sevilla.

Sevilla lost the chance to move fourth last week as they were defeated to Girona, but a home win would restore their chances of playing in next season's Champions League.

The game between Levante and Rayo Vallecano, which gets the ball rolling on Saturday, is vital for both sides. Rayo's home win against Real Madrid last weekend kept their survival chances alive, but defeat (or even a draw) to Levante, who have seven points more than they do, would just about be the end for the Madrid based outfit's survival hopes.

Espanyol still have a slim chance of finishing in the top seven and taking a place in next season's Europa League, but need to beat second placed Atletico Madrid for that to happen.

Atletico may no longer be able to catch Barca, but a point away to Espanyol would mean they are assured of finishing the campaign ahead of Real Madrid for the second consecutive season.

Eighth place Alaves entertain near neighbors Real Sociedad with a win keeping Alaves European hopes alive, while an away win would give Real Sociedad a slim chance of finishing seventh.

Fourth placed Getafe kick off Sunday at home to Girona, who climbed out of the bottom three after beating Sevilla last weekend after ending a six-game losing streak.

Getafe know three points will keep them fourth, while defeat for Girona could see them slip back into the relegation zone if third from bottom Valladolid beat seventh placed Athletic Club Bilbao.

Athletic are currently favorites to finish seventh, but looking to finish higher to avoid having to play extra qualifying rounds and could have Ander Capa, Ibai Gomez and Dani Garcia available again after injury.

After capitulating dreadfully against Rayo, last week Real Madrid need to salvage some pride against a Villarreal side that is still not safe from relegation despite having 40 points, while the round of matches ends with bottom of the table Huesca at home to sixth placed Valencia.

A win for Valencia (who are in Europa League action on Thursday) would keep their top four chances alive, but defeat for Huesca would probably see them become the first side mathematically relegated to the second division.