The last time the La Liga title was won by a team that isn’t Real Madrid, Barcelona or Atletico Madrid was in 2003/04. Valencia were the champions of Spain seventeen years ago, and since then, the trio had dominated the league.
Atletico Madrid are the reigning champions of La Liga, having won the title after seven years. They fended off strong competition from Barcelona and Real Madrid to clinch their 11th title.
This year, though, the title race seems much more open. Several candidates are making a strong case for themselves and could end up being surprise winners. This can be attributed to the great performances from these teams, and the inconsistencies from the top ones.
Diego Simeone has had to turn around games from being down a goal on multiple occasions. The Argentinian knows that it isn’t the ideal situation. And this has resulted in a number of points dropped for the defending champions. They are currently with 19 points from 10 games.
‘Yes, it’s worrying. It worries us and we have to improve as soon as possible,’ the Argentine said after Luis Suarez’s double saw them come from behind to draw at home to Real Sociedad at the weekend.
‘The team scores goals with one, two or three strikers. We can score, but there has to be balance.
Real Betis, Real Sociedad and Sevilla are in the top four alongside Real Madrid. Barcelona’s worst start in 34 years has led to Ronald Koeman losing his job. They are currently in ninth place.