El Classico 2020

The term El Classico refers to a fiery rivalry between Spanish LaLiga giants – Real Madrid and Barcelona. These matchups always create a hype in the footballing world and almost every football fan waits for it to happen. Yesterday was one of them!!

Team Changes

Zinedine Zidane was able to reintroduce Sergio Ramos in the starting lineup after missing the Champions League loss to Shakhtar Donetsk. Marco Asensio also started and Luka Modric fell to the bench.

Koeman vs Zidane: 2 El Clasico legends face off in the dugout | Football News - Times of India
Barca’s Coach Koeman and his Madrid counterpart Zidane

Ronald Koeman named three teens to his starting eleven – Pedri, 17, Ansu Fati, 17, and Sergio Dest, 19, on the team. Antoine Griezmann and Ousmane Dembele fell to the bench, but Jordi Alba was ready to start.

Drama in the first 10 minutes

After a nightmare week for Zinedine Zidane, Real started the game in the best possible way. Karim Benzema’s pass was perfect for Valverde, who took advantage of the reluctance of the Barça defense and finished over Neto.

Tactical Notes: Asensio's Positioning, Valverde's Arrival, Mendy in the Half-Space, and Absorbing Pressure - Managing Madrid
Real Madrid’s Federico Valverde scores in the 5th minute

But that joy did not last long when Barça cut Real’s defense with their first attack. Jordi Alba doubled his career to perfection to beat the offside trap and put the ball into the area, where he yielded to Fati who finished off with ease.

Ansu Fati becomes youngest Clasico scorer in 21st century to break Vinicius Jr's record | Goal.com
Barca’s Ansu Fati after scoring in the 8th minute

Rivalry continues

Philippe Coutinho and Messi had already tried their luck from a distance when Messi saw Courtois produce a magical moment in the 24th minute. The Argentine used his left foot to beat Ramos in the area and shot the near post with his right foot. Courtois was alert and approached the goal to push the ball.

Editors Pick :

The game was played at a steady pace and Real came straight from the other end to create an opportunity of their own. Benzema saw his low effort repulsed by Neto after Kroos found him 15 meters from goal.

Barcelona-Real Madrid score, El Clasico: Ramos, Modric too much for Messi's side; Dest makes American history - CBSSports.com
Ramos in challenge against Pedri

It was Barça who seemed more willing to move on after the break. Fati dragged a low shot past Courtois’ right post before Coutinho missed with a header off the back post. Fati again the creator of the hosts.

VAR intervenes

Barca were forced to pay for those errors in the timestamp. Ramos fell theatrically to the ground in the penalty area when a Kroos free-kick was converted into a penalty kick. It looked like a real-time dive, but replays showed that Clement Lenglet had pulled his jersey.

Barcelona 1–3 Real Madrid, La Liga 2020–21 Match Report: Luka Modric, Sergio Ramos Penalty Help Los Blancos Clinch Season's First El Clasico
Real Madrid FC Captain Sergio Ramos after scoring the penalty!

After consulting the VAR and the side screen of the field of play, referee Juan Martínez Munuera changed his decision and signaled the point. Ramos didn’t make a mistake from 12 yards.

90th minute stunner

Modric secured the three points with the calmest of the goals in the last minute of injury time. Neto smothered the ball at Vinicius’ feet but fell to replace Rodrygo, who passed to Modric. The Croatian surrounded Neto, before taking his time and finishing between two defenders who were guarding the line with the outside of his boot.

FC Barcelona 1-3 Real Madrid LIVE! El Clasico 2020 match stream, result and reaction to Sergio Ramos penalty | London Evening Standard
Real Madrid FC players celebrate their victory

It was a deserved victory for Real, who put their struggles against Cádiz and Shakhtar Donestk behind them to produce a perfect away display. Barca were brilliant in the spells, but you will wonder about Ronald Koeman’s reluctance to make changes earlier.

Next up

It’s the Champions League for both teams, with Barcelona traveling to a Ronaldo-less Juventus on Wednesday and Real Madrid facing a trip to Borussia Monchengladbach 24 hours earlier. Next up in La Liga is a trip to Alavés for Barça next Saturday night, while Real host Huesca earlier in the day.

Also read THFC All or Nothing – A documentary that focuses on winning tactics of ‘The Special One’ 

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