Atletico had been well ahead early this season as Barcelona and Los Blancos battled for consistency, but their recent form has taken a fall.

Only Real Madrid can overtake Atletico

Ex-Real Madrid midfielder Michel has stated that the only squad capable of overtaking Atletico de Madrid at the top of LaLiga is Zinedine Zidane’s team. Atletico had been well ahead early this season as Barcelona and Los Blancos battled for consistency, but their recent form has taken a fall. Indeed, the recent loss to Sevilla has seen an in-form Barca side crawling behind them, with only one point separating the two sides, but Michel says that only Los Blancos can take the top spot from their rivals. Despite Barcelona’s recent good form and Real Madrid being behind them in third in LaLiga, Michel told reporters: “The only team that can overtake Atletico’s lead is Real Madrid. I was surprised that Atletico got so tangled up.”

If Sergio Ramos stays, it would be much better for Madrid and him

“Real Madrid are strong and have more strength in depth than Barcelona. Los Blancos’ two starting centre-backs Raphael Varane and Sergio Ramos, were injured, and the two who played in their place, Nacho and Eder Militao, were excellent”. While Nacho and Militao are suitable substitutes, and Varane and Ramos spend their time on the sidelines. The Blancos captain’s future has become a pressing issue in the Spanish capital. The 35-year-old has yet to negotiate a contract extension to keep him at the Santiago Bernabeu, but Michel hopes a solution can be found. “If I were Ramos and a Real Madrid player, I would never leave,” Michel said. “But I don’t know what’s going on with the negotiations.

“I have lived in Madrid, and I know what that means – even the Spanish police could not take me away. If Sergio Ramos stays, it will be much better for Madrid and him”. Real Madrid will have their chance to fill the ground on eternal rivals Barcelona when they host the Blaugrana at Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano on Saturday. The victory in El Clasico would see Real Madrid leapfrog Barcelona and match Atletico on 66 points at the top of LaLiga – at least until Diego Simeone’s side plays on Sunday.