Alves points to this weekend’s clash against former club Sevilla as pivotal in La Liga race

Barcelona’s eccentric full back Dani Alves has set the gauntlet ahead of this weekend’s penultimate round of fixtures in the La Liga title race.

Alves and his Barcelona team mates defeated relegation fodder Tenerife 4-1 at the Camp Nou Tuesday to move four points ahead of their Clasico rivals Real Madrid. The Whites responded vigorously on Wednesday by cutting Barca’s lead at the top of the table to just one point as a Cristaino Ronaldo hat-track aided his team to a 4-1 victory over Champions League contenders Real Mallorca. The Catalonians can clinch a successive La Liga crown if they are able to beat the Rojiblancos of Sevilla and Madrid are defeated at home by Athletic Bilbao. Alves who made 246 appearances for Sevilla before switching to The Blaugranas in the summer of 2008 for £28 million believes that Saturday’s clash at the Sanchez Pizjuan is the “key” fixture.

“Against Sevilla it will be a difficult game. With the players we have we must be calm, but not relaxed. It will be a key game, and all the time we are getting closer to the end of the season.”

Said the Brazilian.

Both Barca and Real will be favourites to attain 3 points this weekend thus taking the title race to the last game of the season. Full back Alves who turned 27 on Thursday, is only concentrating on his own club’s affairs and knows that as long as they win their next two games they will retain their La Liga crown.

“We need to win the six points that remain to reach our objective. This is a very tough league, and in another season we would already have won it.”

Incidentally Barcelona set a new La Liga record by tallying up 93 points following the win on Tuesday which overtook Real Madrid’s tally of 92 set by Fabio Capello’s side thirteen years ago.

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