La Liga 2012, Week 38 Preview And Fixtures: Judgement Day

VILLARREAL, SPAIN - JANUARY 08: Marcos Senna of Villarreal looks on during the La Liga match between Villarreal and Valencia at Estadio El Madrigal on January 8, 2012 in Villarreal, Spain. (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)

Real Madrid might set the all-time Liga points record (100...that's just unfair) on Sunday, and that's not the thing I'm most excited about. Judgement Day, here we come!

Last weekend, I talked about the inevitability of Judgement Day--and no, I wasn't preaching, I was referring to the Terminator movies. Last week, a select group of teams managed to postpone Judgement Day--that is, the day that their fate as Primera sides would ultimately be decided--by receiving just enough points to fight another day. Just like in the films, the point, however, is that Judgement Day is inevitable; you can't stop it, you simply have to survive it.

Now, like John Connor, Rayo Vallecano, Villarreal, Zaragoza, Sporting Gijón, and Granada all have to find their way to the bunker where they will be safe from Skynet. There's only room for three of them; two of them will fall.

Oh, and incidentally, if Real Madrid wins on Sunday they will set the all-time Liga points record, recording an absolutely absurd 100 points. I don't really know what to say about that, to be honest. It's just a massive amount of points. Just impossibly huge. (THAT'S WHAT SHE FREAKING SAID)

Saturday, May 12

Real Sociedad vs. Valencia

20:00 CET (2:00 PM EST)

Neither side has anything left to play for, as Valencia have mathematically clinched third place, and la Real will not descend or make it to Europe. Snooze.

Pick: 0-0.

Real Betis vs. FC Barcelona

22:00 CET (4:00 PM EST)

I'm going to watch this game just to see how many goals Lionel Messi will score. I'm putting the over/under at 3.5. Any takers?

Pick: 1-5 to Barça.

Sunday, May 13

Getafe vs. Zaragoza

20:00 CET (2:00 PM EST)

The first in our round robin of relegation: if Zaragoza loses at Getafe, they descend. If they draw or win, they would need Rayo Vallecano not to draw or win (the same as them), or they need Granada or Villarreal to lose. Interesting.

Pick: 1-1. Bye bye, Zara.

Levante vs. Athletic Bilbao

20:00 CET (2:00 PM EST)

So this match has European implications, as Athletic need to win to even have a shot of getting back to the Europa League, and Levante need a win to put themselves in position to compete internationally. A win for either side will thrust them back into the competition, but they're both currently on the outside looking in, and would need some help from Mallorca, Atlético Madrid, and company.

Pick: 0-2 to Bilbao.

Real Madrid vs. Mallorca

20:00 CET (2:00 PM EST)

This is not nearly a lock for Madrid, as they're taking on a Mallorca squad that needs to win to make it into Europe. I imagine that Mourinho's drive to be the best (numerical) side in La Liga history will compel him to take the game seriously, so I can't imagine that Madrid won't at least give it a good shot. Which, in this league, pretty much means they'll dominate.

Pick: 3-2 to Madrid.

Rayo Vallecano vs. Granada

20:00 CET (2:00 PM EST)

Maybe the game of the week, but not from a footballing perspective. Rayo host Granada needing a win to ensure their place in Primera next season. If they do win, their stadium will go nuts, and Granada might go down, depending on how Villarreal and Zaragoza fare. As it stands, I doubt Granada go down, even if they lose. Too many things have to fall into place to see the Andalusian side drop.

Pick: 2-1 to Rayo.

Espanyol vs. Sevilla

20:00 CET (2:00 PM EST)

Pride match. I doubt there will be any money or anything riding on this.

Pick: 1-1.

Málaga vs. Sporting Gijón

20:00 CET (2:00 PM EST)

Sporting might be out of luck: they have to go into Málaga and win to even have a shot of staying in first division. Málaga need to win to remain in the Champions League. I doubt Sporting will be able to pull this one off.

Pick: 3-1 to Málaga. Bye, Sporting.

Villarreal vs. Atlético Madrid

20:00 CET (2:00 PM EST)

Hard match here for Villarreal, especially as Atleti have to win to try to get back to the Champions League. Still, I believe in this Villarreal team, and I just can't see them in Segunda. That being said, they need to perform here if they want to control their own destinies.

Pick: 1-2 to Villarreal! Aupa!

Racing Santander vs. Osasuna

20:00 CET (2:00 PM EST)

A win here for Osasuna over already giving up Racing, coupled with an Atleti loss to Villarreal, would allow Osasuna to sneak into the Europa League. It would also mean that Levante and Athletic would not make it into Europe. My head is about to explode from all these scenarios; let's just watch and see what happens.

Pick: 0-0.

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