The first Spanish soccer title of the 2013-2014 season - the Supercopa - will be up for grabs starting Wednesday, with Atletico Madrid trying to pull off a big upset against powerhouse FC Barcelona.
Barça captured last season's La Liga title, while Atletico won the right to play off for the Supercopa by virtue of winning the Copa del Rey.
The first of two matches is scheduled for Wednesday evening at the Madrid squad's Vicente Calderon Stadium and will mark the home debut for Spaniard David Villa, a former star for the Blaugrana.
The contest also will pit the game's greatest player, four-time world player of the year Lionel Messi, against the Spanish league's stingiest defense last season.
Newly signed Brazilian phenom Neymar also should be in action once again for the Catalans, who got this year's league season off to a strong start with a 7-0 demolition of Levante.
The second leg of the Supercopa championship will be played Aug. 28 at Camp Nou.
Atletico Madrid has won two Europa League titles in recent years, as well as Copa del Rey and UEFA Super Cup championships, but the team is expected to take a step back this season after losing star Colombian striker Radamel Falcao, who signed with French club Monaco.
The 31-year-old Villa, who was signed to replace Falcao, played for three seasons with Barcelona and was part of its Champions League-winning team in 2011.
He also was a key part of the Spanish side that won the 2010 World Cup. EFE