2023/24 Spanish La Liga fixtures revealed

LaLiga’s fixtures for the 2023-24 season were released on Thursday and the new campaign is already bubbling with promise after some busy transfer market activity.

As Real Madrid look to reclaim the title from rivals Barcelona, they have spent €103 million to sign England midfielder Jude Bellingham from Borussia Dortmund and might not be done yet, with a possible €120m-plus move for either Paris Saint-Germain’s Kylian Mbappe or Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane after star striker Karim Benzema left for Saudi Arabia.

Meanwhile financially stricken Barca, who won the league for the first time since 2019 last season, are closing in on the free transfer signing of Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan as they attempt to build on that success while balancing their books.

Atletico Madrid, who were perhaps the best team in Spain in the second half of the campaign, led by the impressive Antoine Griezmann, will be hoping to break up the Barca-Madrid duopoly, as they have managed to do twice under Diego Simeone in the past decade.

Elsewhere, Real Sociedad, Sevilla, Villarreal, Real Betis and Athletic Club are among the teams who will start the season with hopes of finishing in the top four. At the other end of the spectrum, Granada, Las Palmas and Alaves have all returned to the top flight after brief spells in the second division.

With the fixtures now published and managers, players and supporters able to plot their path to glory — or otherwise — here are the talking points.

The new LaLiga season gets underway on Aug. 12, with Barca and Madrid both starting on the road. Barca face a difficult trip to Jose Bordalas’ Getafe, where they have often struggled in the past, and coach Xavi Hernandez moaned about the length of the grass after drawing there last season.

Madrid also have a tough start, away at Athletic, while Atletico face newly promoted Granada at home. Sevilla vs. Valencia and Villarreal vs. Real Betis are both fixtures to keep an eye on in the opening weekend of the campaign, too.

Barca step slightly into the unknown this season as they move away from Spotify Camp Nou while renovation work is carried out on the stadium. In the meantime, for around 15 months, they will play at the Olympic Stadium in the Montjuic area of the city, which sees their stadium capacity slashed from 100,000 to 50,000. Xavi has said it will be difficult to get used to but is hopeful it won’t affect the rebuild he is carrying out at the club.

First up in Montjuic will be Cadiz in the second week of the season (Aug. 20), but Barca face three of their first four games away from home. After Cadiz, they have challenging matches at Villarreal (Aug. 27) and Osasuna (Sept. 3), two teams that finished in the top seven last season, in the run-up to the September international break.

That tough run is followed by three home games out of four, with Real Betis, Celta Vigo and Sevilla all due to play, before an awkward-looking October. At a time when Champions League fixtures are coming thick and fast, Barca face Athletic (Oct. 22), Madrid (Oct. 29) and Real Sociedad (Nov. 5) in the league.

Like Barca, Madrid also start with run of away games as work continues on the redevelopment of the Santiago Bernabeu. After facing Athletic, they travel to Almeria (Aug. 20) and Celta (Aug. 27). However, unlike Barca, they will be back in their home stadium by September when they host Getafe (Sept. 3) in a Madrid derby.

If Madrid can get a positive result at Athletic’s San Mames on the opening weekend, they should be in good shape come the first international break with those fixtures. Tougher tests await them after, though, with Real Sociedad and Atletico to come in back-to-back games in mid-September and consecutive away ties against Sevilla and Barca at the end of October.

ESPN