You are here
Home > Football > The world’s best club game lives up to its billing!

The world’s best club game lives up to its billing!

Just when it seemed like another season in Spain was nearing the inevitable conclusion of Barcelona winning the league title, Real Madrid have thrown the proverbial cat among the pigeons. In a scintillating El Clasico, Real claimed a 2-1 victory at the home of their arch-rivals and La Liga just got a whole lot more interesting.

The build up to El Clasico was rather restrained, with the death of the indomitable Johan Cryuff dominating the headlines and the match started on an emotional note with a minute’s silence and then applause in the 14th minute. (It was actually the 15th minute of the game but we can let that minor faux pas slide) The #GraciasJohan tributes were complete and then the classic begun.

Barcelona took the lead through a Pique header but Real equalised through a sensational scissor kick by Karim Benzema. Real thought they had taken the lead when Gareth Bale had headed the ball in to the net, but was harshly disallowed for a push. Then Sergio Ramos received his marching orders (many minutes too late) but yet Real took and held on to the lead through a late Cristiano Ronaldo strike. In between, Luis Suarez missed a sitter, Ramos walked a tightrope with his constant fouling, the crowd jeered the referee and left-back Marcelo cemented his role as Real’s key playmaker.

Barca’s 39-game, six-month unbeaten run was brought to a grinding halt and now they find themselves with 6-point cushion over Atletico Madrid and one more over Real. Barca should yet win the league title but the defeat may have implications for their Champions League quarterfinal clash against Atletico. Real too are likely to be filled with confidence against Wolfsburg.

One of the many implications of this El Clasico is that Zinedine Zidane is almost assured of remaining Real Madrid manager for another season at least. He has had a mixed start since replacing Rafael Benitez but this victory has likely given him the job security he desired.

Leave a Reply