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Wednesday 18 October 2017

Neymar eyes treble and reckons Barca's attack is better than Real's

Barcelona's Neymar. Photo: Reuters
Barcelona's Neymar. Photo: Reuters

Barcelona's Neymar reckons the club's forward line, which also includes Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, is superior to Real Madrid's attacking trio, fanning debate over whose is best.

On recent form, Barca's South Americans, known in Spain as 'MNS', have the edge over Real's European strikeforce of Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale, dubbed 'BBC'.

Ronaldo, Benzema and Bale were on electric form at the end of 2014 as Real put together a Spanish record 22-match winning run but have gone off the boil since the turn of the year as Messi, Neymar and Suarez have moved up the gears.

The sextet, who together are worth about €450m, will have a chance to prove a point when the La Liga rivals meet in "El Clasico" at Barca's Nou Camp stadium on March 22 and Neymar said the Catalan giants had the edge.

"We try to cause damage to our opponents' defences and with each passing day we understand each other better," the Brazil captain said yesterday.

"They are fantastic players, Leo is the best in the world and Suarez a great goalscorer, for me it's an honour to play with them," he added.

While Barca appear to be hitting top form at exactly the right time, Real have stumbled in recent weeks and Tuesday's 4-3 Champions League defeat at home to Schalke 04 was their third straight match without a win.

The holders squeaked into the quarter-finals of Europe's elite club competition 5-4 on aggregate but Barcelona are favourites to win La Liga and still have a chance to repeat 2009's treble of Spanish league and Cup and Champions League.

"I think we have the team to think about doing the treble," Neymar said. "We are on good form, we are playing our game better all the time and we will be strong.

"The 'Clasico' will be like a final. The gap won't be definitive, the season is very long and there are a lot of matches left."

Barca have a chance to stretch their lead over Real in La Liga to four points when they play at Eibar on Saturday before Real host Levante on Sunday.

($1 = 0.9444 euros) (Writing by Iain Rogers, editing by Michael Hann)

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