Barcelona the favorite to defend Supercopa de Espana title
FC Barcelona will be vying for a record 13th Supercopa de Espana crown on Sunday when they take on rivals Real Madrid in the first leg of this year’s Supercopa as the -115 favorites.
Barca has dominated at this competition in recent years, claiming seven Supercopa titles in nine appearances since 2005, and earned a berth in Sunday’s matchup at Camp Nou by virtue of their 3-1 win over Alaves as -1000 chalk in this year’s Copa del Rey final.
The club’s third straight Copa del Rey win contributed to their current 14-match unbeaten streak across all competitions, including a 3-1 victory over Real as +130 chalk in an International Champions Cup matchup two weeks ago. Barcelona’s offense has been on fire during its 12-2-0 run, outscoring opponents by an overall margin of 43-14, and keeping clean sheets on four occasions.
Those trends were on full display in Barcelona’s last outing, a 5-0 victory in a club friendly with Brazilian side Chapecoense this past Monday, and a 1-0 win as a -133 bet in an ICC clash with Manchester United on July 26.
This El Clasico matchup marks the first meaningful contest for Barca since the departure of superstar forward Neymar Jr., who recently left the squad for Paris Saint-Germain as part of the richest player transfer in European soccer history.
While Barcelona will miss Neymar’s offensive production, which included 16 goals in 36 total La Liga and domestic cup appearances last season, Barcelona captain Lionel Messi and teammate Luis Suarez remain more than capable of picking up the slack.
Messi has buried seven total goals over his past nine outings, and Suarez has tallied six markers in eight matches, and are props betting favorites to score at least once on Sunday with -120 and -105 odds, respectively.
Real Madrid returns to the Supercopa de Espana for the first time since 2014 after claiming the La Liga crown last season, but with just one win inside 90 minutes over their past five contests, the club trails as +235 underdogs in Sunday’s first-leg matchup.
Los Blancos halted their disappointing offseason run at Tuesday’s UEFA Super Cup, posting a 2-1 win over Manchester United as +118 chalk, and are 8-0-1 in their past nine meaningful contests. Real also eked out a win on away goals in its last Supercopa meeting with Barca in 2012, but has just one victory in the past six El Clasico matchups, a narrow 2-1 win in La Liga action in April 2016.