La Liga, Round 38 preview: Atlético Madrid and Barcelona will play for the title

Clive Rose

The league title, and the two final relegation spots, are up for grabs in the season's final round.

After nearly nine months and hundreds of matches, the 2013/14 La Liga season will come to a close this weekend. The league title, and the two final relegation spots, remain unclaimed, leaving much to be determined

Atlético Madrid and Barcelona will meet on Saturday at the Camp Nou with the league title on the line. The visitors will have the edge, needing just a draw to claim their first title since 1996, while Barcelona's only path to a 23rd league title is to defeat Atléti.

The two teams have met five times this season, once in the league and twice in theSpanish Super Cup and Champions League. The two sides drew in four of those five matches, with Atleéti winning the fifth, and most recent, to knock the Blaugrana out of the Champions League.

The last time Atléti won at the Camp Nou was February 5th, 2006, when a Fernando Torres brace led Los Colchoneros to a 3-1 victory.

Five teams -- Osasuna, Real Valladolid, Granada, Getafe and Almeria --  are still in danger of ending up in one of the final two relegation spots at the close of play on Sunday. Valladolid and Granada will face off at the Estadio Nuveo José Zorrilla, in a match that nearly all the relegation scenarios hinge upon. The scenarios are complicated, but fortunately, you can read all about them thanks to some great work from our Villarreal blog.

Here's a taste of just how complicated things are:

If Valladolid defeat Granada: Granada are relegated. If Osasuna draw or lose versus Betis, they are down as well, Valladolid stay up. But what happens if Osasuna defeat Betis? It depends on the results of the Getafe match.

Briefly put, Getafe lose any tiebreak. So if they lose, Osasuna win and Valladolid win, Getafe are down. But if Getafe win or draw, Valladolid win and Osasuna win, Valladolid go down. Got it?

Hopefully that didn't give you a headache.

Athletic Bilbao will finish fourth, claiming the final Champions League place, while Sevilla, Real Sociedad and Villarreal are locked into Europa League spots, though their exact finishing order could change. Real Betis are already relegated.

Here's the schedule for the final round of play in La Liga for the season:

Friday, May 16

Málaga vs. Levante | 3 p.m. ET, 9 p.m. CEST

Saturday, May 17

Real Madrid vs. Espnayol | 10 a.m. ET, 4 p.m. CEST

Barcelona vs. Atlético Madrid | 12 p.m. ET, 6 p.m. CEST

Valencia vs. Celta Vigo | 4 p.m. ET, 10 p.m. CEST

Sunday, May 18

Real Sociedad vs. Villarreal | 6 a.m. ET, 12 p.m. CEST

Almeria vs. Athletic Bilbao | 12 p.m. ET, 6 p.m. CEST

Osasuna vs. Real Betis | 12 p.m. ET, 6 p.m. CEST

Rayo Vallecano vs. Getafe | 12 p.m. ET, 6 p.m. CEST

Real Valladolid vs. Granada | 12 p.m. ET, 6 p.m. CEST

Sevilla vs. Elche | 3 p.m. ET, 9 p.m. CEST

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