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Arbeloa on the Clasico, Benzema and Bale

The former Liverpool defender has insisted that Real Madrid have clicked into gear, just ahead of their game with Barcelona.

Alvaro Arbeloa believes that Real Madrid go into the Clasico this weekend against Barcelona in the best possible shape.

Madrid followed up the weekend’s dominant display over Malaga with a 2-1 win in the Champions League on Wednesday against Juventus.

For the side’s experienced right-back, the Blancos are getting into gear just in time for the match at Camp Nou on Saturday.

“The match against Barcelona comes at a good time for us. We are improving and gaining confidence, so we’ll see if we can win,” Arbeloa told reporters.

“We know it will be a very difficult match. I’m sure that Barcelona will be at their best because they always play well against us.

“We can’t look at their recent draws are a guide. They have a three-point lead, but in recent matches in the Camp Nou we’ve got good results and put in some great performances.”

Arbeloa was talking after Madrid’s win against Juve, which saw Karim Benzema miss an open goal in the second half and Gareth Bale play out a quiet 25-minute cameo from the bench.

“We still have to improve and we have Xabi Alonso to come back into the team. The team is getting better.

“Karim is important to us and that is why he has to keep working as he is. The season is long and I’m sure Bale will help us a lot.

“Benzema’s chance? It was a very difficult chance. He went in very strong and nearly scored. He is a great player that helps us a lot. Benzema will show people what he's worth and the fans will cheer for him.”

image: © Jan S0L0

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