Real Sociedad vs Barcelona Prediction, Betting Lines & Picks

Real Sociedad vs Barcelona

  • Barcelona have been in fine form domestically and have closed the gap at the top
  • Inconsistency means Real Sociedad’s hopes of a top-four finish are fading fast 
  • Barcelona should have enough to collect another three points this weekend

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Real Sociedad vs Barcelona Predictions and Picks

Real Sociedad are a good side on their day, but Koeman’s men have superior quality all over the pitch and that should make the difference at Anoeta.


Barcelona to Win ()

How to Watch Real Sociedad vs Barcelona

Real Sociedad vs Barcelona Information
WhatReal Sociedad vs Barcelona
WhereEstadio de Anoeta, San Sebastian, Spain
WhenSunday, 21 March 2021, 4.00 PM EDT
How to watchbeIN SPORTS

Barcelona have Atletico Madrid in their sights, having risen to within four points of the La Liga headers. Diego Simeone’s side looked to have the title wrapped up a few weeks ago, but they have faltered of late and allowed Barcelona and Real Madrid back into the race.

In a strange way, the pressure is off Barca. Atletico may be a less storied club with a smaller budget than the Catalans, but they will be expected to get over the line having opened up a commanding lead. Barcelona have the bit between their teeth right now, so back them to beat Real Sociedad in the late fixture on Sunday.

Barcelona Overcome off-Field Issues to Get Back in the Title Race

For a club that has spent most of the season mired in crisis, Barcelona have a decent chance of winning a domestic double this term. Ronald Koeman’s side recently overcame a 2-0 first-leg deficit to advance to the Copa del Rey final, and they are now seeking to climb above Atletico Madrid and into the top spot in La Liga. Seven points adrift of Atletico despite having played two games more in late December, Barcelona are now just four points behind the leaders, with 11 fixtures remaining for each club.

Ronald Koeman deserves credit for turning things around at the Camp Nou. There are still doubts over the Dutchman’s long-term suitability for the job, but he has done well to haul Barcelona back into the title conversation. He has had to deal with a presidential election and near-constant rumors surrounding Lionel Messi’s future, yet Koeman has undoubtedly made Barca a stronger force now than they were earlier in the campaign.

The Blaugrana have been superb in La Liga throughout the calendar year. Of their 12 matches in 2021, Barcelona have won 11 and tied one. Even that 1-1 draw with Cadiz was somewhat unfortunate, with Koeman’s side much the better team throughout the contest.

Barcelona have tightened up at the back and become much slicker in attack – no team in La Liga has found the net as often this season. Unbeaten in their last 17 league games, Barcelona are clear favorite to triumph on Sunday.

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Real Sociedad Now Focused on Qualifying for the Europa League

Atletico will be looking to avoid the fate of Real Sociedad, who are now fifth in the standings having been sitting at the summit earlier this season. In fairness to the Basque side, they were overachieving massively by topping the table for a period last year, and fifth place is around where most people expected them to finish before a ball had been kicked.

Even so, La Real will be somewhat disappointed that their top-four chances are now hanging by a thread. A 1-0 loss to Granada last time out leaves them nine points behind Sevilla, and another defeat this weekend could see the deficit rise to 12 points. That would surely end Imanol Alguacil’s hopes of leading Real Sociedad into the Champions League; indeed, he is probably now focusing on qualifying for the Europa League instead.

Real Sociedad were actually in pretty good form prior to that setback against Granada. They went unbeaten in their previous seven La Liga matches, a run which included a creditable draw with Real Madrid, as well as comfortable victories over Alaves and Cadiz in which they scored a combined eight goals.

Alguacil will draw confidence from his side’s home record – they have not lost at Anoeta since Atletico ran out 2-0 winners there in late December – but Real Sociedad will know they are in for a tough test here.

Barcelona Are Clicking Under Ronald Koeman and Should Win Here

Barcelona may have been eliminated from the Champions League by Paris Saint-Germain earlier this month, but there is a sense of optimism around the club at present. Joan Laporta has now been confirmed as their new president, and there is a growing belief that Messi will extend his contract in Catalonia beyond the current campaign. On top of that, Koeman has got the team playing some excellent soccer again.

Failing to win the title is always a disappointment for a club of Barcelona’s stature, but a four-point gap is very much surmountable. The Blaugrana will ask questions of Real Sociedad’s defense throughout this encounter, and given that they are averaging 2.66 goals per league game in 2021, the home team might not be able to answer them.

Real Sociedad may have hit four past Alaves and Cadiz recently, but Barcelona will be a much tougher nut to crack. The Catalan giants are rather well organized these days, having kept three clean sheets in their last four outings. They are not able to produce the level of control as the sides managed by Pep Guardiola or Luis Enrique, but Koeman’s Barcelona are still adept at taking the sting out of away games via possession. That could be the case again on Sunday.

Barcelona are still a long away from dominating the European game as they have done at times in the last 15 years, but the La Liga title is within their grasp. A Real Sociedad team that has not beaten any of the four teams above them in the table thsis season will struggle to resist Barca’s attacking unit this weekend.

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Greg Lea

Expert on Soccer

Greg Lea is a freelance soccer journalist from London. He is the former editor of The Set Pieces, and has contributed to the Guardian, FourFourTwo, and ESPN. A Crystal Palace fan, he is a long-time subscriber to the belief that it's the taking part that counts.

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