Barcelona full back Dani Alves insists talk of the title race being over in Spain is very premature.
Pep Guardiola's side find themselves six points behind Real Madrid at the top of La Liga after a 1-0 defeat to Getafe over the weekend, whilst their great rivals beat Atletico 4-1 in the Madrid derby.
But, with 'El Clasico' less than a fortnight away, the balance of power could dramatically swing towards the Catalan club with a positive outcome at the Santiago Bernabeu, and Alves admits the challenge for the title is an exciting one this term.
"Many would hand the league over to Real Madrid now and they are letting off fireworks," said the Brazilian.
"But the challenge is exciting and it fascinates us. And luckily for us there is still a long way to go. A nine-point difference, if we lose at the Bernabeu, would be tremendous.
"There is no margin for error, but we will go there and compete as we know how."
The current domestic and European champions have three matches ahead of the clash with Jose Mourinho's side, with Rayo Vallacano next to travel to the Nou Camp tomorrow night.
Levante make the same trip on Saturday before a dead rubber in the Champions League against BATE Borisov, with Guardiola's side already guaranteed first place in Group H after the 3-2 win against AC Milan at the San Siro last week.
A trip to the Spanish capital is the next big test on Saturday, 10th December.