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Real Madrid will take a significant step to winning the Spanish title this weekend if they can overcome Real Mallorca.

Madrid increased their lead at the top of the table to four points last weekend, after they won comfortably at Sevilla, while their closest rivals, Real Sociedad and Deportivo La Coruna, lost at Barcelona and Mallorca respectively.

Madrid have now gone 49 league games unbeaten at home since they lost to Mallorca in November 2000, but the prospects of a repeat on Saturday, look slender.

Deportivo face improving Recreativo Huelva on Sunday, while Socieded host Sevilla. Huelva climbed out of the relegation zone last weekend after thrashing Villarreal 5-0, while Sevilla will be looking to bounce back from last weekend’s home defeat to Madrid, as they maintain their pursuit of a UEFA Cup spot.

Barcelona, who have not given up hope of qualifying for the UEFA Cup, should have few problems as they host bottom of the table Rayo Vallecano.

Elsewhere, reining champions Valencia travel to Racing Santander. Meanwhile Celta Vigo their closest challengers and indeed the only team capable of denying Rafael Benitez’s side another season in the Champions League, travel to a struggling Alaves side shorn of coach Jose Manuel Esnal, who was saxked earlier in the week.

FIXTURES

Real Sociedad v Sevilla

04-05-03
Alaves v Celta Vigo
Racing Santander v Valencia
Valladolid v Atletico Madrid
Barcelona v Rayo Vallecano

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