Spanish football finally returns on Thursday night, with Premier Sports bringing a feast of live action for fans across the United Kingdom.
With matches every day, and every game free to watch on LaLiga TV, it’s time to take a look at 10 things to watch out for across the opening round of fixtures.
LaLiga returns this weekend, and shirts hang in the streets of Madrid to raise the excitement
1. A Seville derby to kick things off
If you’re a regular to Spanish football, you’ll know that El Gran Derbi between Sevilla and Real Betis is by far the most fiery and dramatic in the league.
The Seville city rivals are treading very different paths this season, with the red half of the city going for the Champions League, while the green half languish in the bottom half of the table, still not fully safe from relegation.
It will, of course, be a derby with a difference. The fans are a huge part of the game and the Sanchez Pizjuan will be empty, but if anything that makes this all the more intriguing. It is the first match to take place after the restart, at 9pm UK time on Thursday… and there’s no better way to bring Spanish football back.
Bitter rivals Sevilla and Real Betis come up against each other in the first match back this week
If Sevilla win, there will be no fans to goad like November, but it would still be a huge result
2. FIFA crowd noise
With no fans in stadiums across Spain, LaLiga have looked at different ways to improve the viewing experience on television.
There will be new camera angles, from places that previously would have impeded the view of fans at the game, and the option of FIFA 20 crowd noise to improve the atmosphere.
Digital fans will be in the stands to make it look more like a *normal* game… and all in all, it is hoped that watching games in the coming weeks might even be a better experience than it was before the coronavirus shutdown.
With stadiums around the country devoid of fans, FIFA 20 crowd noise will be used on the TV
3. Real Madrid in their B-team stadium
On Sunday evening, at 6.30pm UK time, Real Madrid will host their first game back against Eibar. There will, of course, be no fans present at the Bernabeu… but interestingly there won’t even be players present at the Bernabeu.
Instead, Real will be holding their home games at their 6,000-seater B-team venue Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano as their main stadium undergoes renovation work.
It will be interesting to see how Zinedine Zidane’s men get on. Some argue it will be a disadvantage as none of their remaining fixtures will technically be home games, while others believe the smaller stadium will be easier to play in with a lack of fans.
Real Madrid will play their home games away from the Bernabeu at their B-team’s stadium
4. Suarez and Braithwaite fighting it out
One man benefitting from the…