Madrid, Spain – Real Madrid is going for its eighth straight league win on Saturday as it welcomes Racing to the Bernabeu, but manager Jose Mourinho just sees the match as an opportunity to pick up three points.
Los Blancos currently enjoy a 10-point lead at the top of the La Liga table over fierce rivals Barcelona, but Mourinho is not interested in breaking any records en route to the title.
"Our objective is to take three points," said Mourinho. "We're not looking to break records or other things the press talks about. We must keep up the good work because the runners-up are a great team that can cause us problems.
"We'll try to win every game and, obviously, to win the championship as soon as possible. Winning the league title by one point would be a success."
It has proved to be the correct formula to this point in the season as Real has dominated play in Spain's top flight, winning 19 of its 22 matches. That impressive run has seen Mourinho's men occupy first place in the league for 15 of 22 weeks, roughly two-thirds of the season.
Real is also getting healthier at just the right time. Gonzalo Higuain resumed first-team training this week to provide Mourinho with another option in attack, but with the team on a good run and without a Champions League clash midweek, the Portuguese tactician looks more than happy to stick with the side that has guided him to the league summit.
"I think my men are in perfect form and I don't believe we should make any changes to the starting lineup because we haven't played too many games lately," Mourinho said.
Cristiano Ronaldo will likely be the first name on the team sheet after his hat trick helped lead Real to a 4-2 win over Levante in its last outing. The Portuguese star continues to set the league afire with 27 goals on the year.
Racing's staunch defense, which has conceded just 26 goals through 22 games, will need to be at its best on Saturday if the club hopes to take points off of the leaders.
In its last match, Racing was held to scoreless draw against Atletico Madrid. Los Verdiblancos have drawn three straight matches and sit in the relegation zone on 23 points.
Saturday's two other La Liga fixtures will see fifth-place Espanyol head to the Coliseum Alfonso Perez to face Getafe, while Sevilla, winless in its last eight games, welcome eighth-place Osasuna, fresh off its shock defeat of Barcelona, to the Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan.
Barcelona returns to league action on Sunday with a home match against third- place Valencia, five days after its midweek 3-1 Champions League win at Bayer Leverkusen.
The Catalans suffered a shock 3-2 defeat at the hands of Osasuna in their last La Liga contest as they fell 10 points off the pace set by Real Madrid. Valencia, meanwhile, is unbeaten in its last four league games and is coming off of a 4-0 thrashing of Sporting Gijon.
Despite going on a seven-game winless run, Levante is still holding down fourth place in La Liga with 32 points. It will welcome 10th-place Rayo Vallecano, which has won two straight league games, to the Ciutat de Valencia on Sunday.
Elsewhere on Sunday, Granada looks to climb further away from the relegation zone when it hosts Real Sociedad, Malaga hopes to claim its second straight win when it heads to Athletic Bilbao, Villarreal aims to extend its unbeaten run to five games when it goes to Mallorca, and Atletico Madrid looks to remain unbeaten for a seventh straight game as it heads to Sporting Gijon.
Real Zaragoza and Real Betis will cap Round 23 of La Liga on Monday when the two sides meet at the Estadio La Romareda.