Barring a 3-2 defeat against PSG in the Champions League, Barcelona have had a flawless season so far. Not only are they unbeaten in La Liga, they have won every single game, apart from a 0-0 draw with Malaga, with relatively ease. Remarkably, they have yet to concede a goal in eight league games.
That all could change against their greatest and more fearsome rivals, Real Madrid. Madrid have recovered after a slow start to win seven games on the bounce in all competitions. They have scored 30 goals in just eight La Liga games, seven goals in just two Champions League ties and three in other competitions, making 40 overall.
With Cristiano Ronaldo in record breaking form - the forward has 19 goals in 12 games - there is surely no way Barcelona will be able to keep a clean sheet.
As the PSG game showed, playing against a big team is a different kettle of fish to a minnow. The margins for error are minimal and Barcelona will need to be at their best, that means Lionel Messi should be relieved of penalty duties.
Just recently, Messi missed again against Levante just before the early October international break; a few days later he missed again, this time during the international break against Brazil for Argentina.
Messi's penalty misses are indiscriminate; whether it is a dubber rubber against Levante (Barcelona won 5-0) or in the biggest international fixture football has to offer: Argentina vs Brazil.
Affectionately known as El Clasico, game between Barcelona and Madrid commonly features a glut of penalties as rage and passion overcomes common sense.
Would you back Messi to score the next penalty?