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Five Aside

Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid fighting to challenge Barcelona for La Liga title

The first Madrid derbi at the Wanda Metropolitano will take place on Saturday as Atletico Madrid welcome Real Madrid, with both teams attempting to keep the pace behind leaders Barcelona in La Liga.

Real, third in the table and eight points back, have won just once in their last eight league meetings against Atletico. That was on Nov. 19 last season at Atletico's former home, the Vicente Calderon, when a hat trick by Cristiano Ronaldo gave Real the 3-0 victory.

The two teams played to a 1-1 draw in their last La Liga meeting, on April 8 at the Santiago Bernabeu. And, although Atletico won 2-1 in the second leg of their Champions League semifinal against their rivals in May, a 3-0 victory at home for Real in the first leg allowed them to advance on aggregate to the final -- where they defeated Juventus to become the first repeat winner of the competition since 1990.

Atletico, fourth in the table but level with Real on 23 points, enter Saturday with a 15-game unbeaten run in La Liga dating to last season. They have won nine games and drawn six others during that span -- their longest without a defeat since they went 15 games without a loss between the end of 2011-12 and start of 2012-13.

And although Atletico has lost just once in a La Liga derbi in the last four years, they have won only one in their last 16 home league meetings with Real -- a 4-0 victory at the Calderon on Feb. 7, 2015.

Real, meanwhile, have won 11 of those last 16 meetings, and they have claimed not only 86 wins against Atletico, more than any other team in La Liga, they also have 34 away wins, the most of any team against them in the competition.

Cristiano Ronaldo has scored six goals in his last four meetings against Atletico Madrid in all competitions.

Ronaldo, who missed the first four La Liga games because of a suspension, has just one league goal in seven appearances.

He has taken 48 shots in La Liga -- second only to Barcelona's Lionel Messi, who has taken 69 shots and scored 12 goals.

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