The mega countdown to one of the biggest matches in football is on! As the kick-off time to the El Clasico is nearing, the heartbeat and the excitement level of the fans and football lovers are booming sky high.
The La Liga is done and dusted with Barcelona winning it with their unmatchable aura and style. Their statistics this season is impressive and all the other teams in the league had just bowed down to their brilliance and determination to win and do it in style.
But when it comes to the El Clasico, every stat, current form and the results of previous encounters just go out of the window, and what prevails on the pitch is pure passion from the players. The fans are up to their voice and the atmosphere is one of the best in and around the stadium.
For Barcelona, with the La Liga already in their bag, it is the best opportunity for them to showcase their domestic dominance with a victory over arch-rivals Real Madrid at the Camp Now on Sunday. A win could strengthen their chances of becoming invincibles and stomp their authority in the history books forever.
Real Madrid may have entered the finals of the UEFA Champions League for the unimaginable THIRD consecutive time and it’s a praise worthy achievement but this Barcelona squad deserves more praise to be consistent in league and not losing a single game. It is a fabulous achievement. And yes, they have won the Copa Del Rey too! Iniesta's last El Clasico appearance would be emotional for him aswell as his teammates and there could not be any better opportunity to give him a perfect farewell.
The Los Blancos’ ability to be at their best when they smell trophies around is one of the best in the business with predators and game changers like Cristiano Ronaldo, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Sergio Ramos and others hit the best patch when needed.
This Barcelona team is not the best in the world, with their defence prone to mistakes, their midfield unable to control games like in the past and the bench strength is also not solid enough. But to term them ‘one-man team’ for the brilliance of Lionel Messi would be too harsh on the other players.
Messi, no doubt, creates something out of nothing which no other player could emulate in the whole world, and the support which he gets from the players deserves applause.
In La Liga, Messi has 44 goal involvement of Barcelona’s 87 goals, and no other team than Real Madrid would know the importance to stop the man.
A debate could start straight away for Real Madrid’s reliance on individual stars to win the games, especially with Cristiano Ronaldo in their ranks. Individual ability has worked for the Los Blancos in the cup competitions, in the Champions League to be specific. But a team cannot depend on individual brilliance week in and week out across the whole season.
Real Madrid would be completely motivated to be the one to defeat Barcelona and play a party spoiler, and a win would help them finish above city-rival Atletico Madrid in second. The chance to end Barcelona’s ‘invincibles’ dream is something Real Madrid would relish to win the game. They would want a revenge for the 3-0 humiliation at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Managers’ tactics will play a big part in the game. With Ernesto Valverde prioritising the league and playing the strongest possible and battered opposition with their personality on the pitch, and Zinedine Zidane being the complete different side of the coin, the French has given huge game-time to youngsters like Asensio, Vasquez rather than going for big name players like Gareth Bale or Karim Benzema, and he deserves every bit of credit to get the best out of younger players and get away from the reliance on the BBC.
Although the league is done, the contest on Sunday should be a fascinating one and no one can wait till the moment comes and the referee blows the kick off whistle to the El Clasico!