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Deportivo La Coruña
October 26, 2013
• Camp Nou, Barcelona
Referee: Alberto Undiano Mallenco
• Attendance: 98761
A. Sánchez 78'
Barcelona wont mind though, they win the Clasico! I'm Martin Macdonald, thanks for joining us, see you next time!
Real Madrid were definitely not at their best tonight, but will feel slightly aggrieved that they were not awarded a penalty in the second half for Mascherano's challenge on Ronaldo.
A goal in the first half from Neymar and a wonderful finish from Alexis Sanchez in the second period eventually win it for Barcelona as they go six points clear of Real Madrid in La Liga. Jese grabbed one back for Real Madrid in the latter stages but the Catalan side held on for the vital victory.
FULL TIME! BARCELONA WIN THE CLASICO!
90' + 2'
Are we in for a grandstand finish here?!
90' + 1'
90' + 1'
GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAALLL FOR REAL MADRID!! THE COMEBACK SURELY ISN'T ON, IS IT?! The visitors counterattack at pace and Jese latches on to a pass through the middle before powering a strike through Valdes! Poor goalkeeping! 2-1 Barca!
Now it's Barca's turn to run down the clock as they play the ball around in and around the Real Madrid penalty area.
Real Madrid just knock the ball around defence but they are forced back to Diego Lopez as Barcelona continue to hunt down possession. They just aren't being allowed to create play in the final third at the moment.
Neymar leaves the Clasico to a standing ovation as he is substituted for Pedro! Quite a debut against Real Madrid!
Superb play by Dani Alves!! The former Sevilla man cleverly nutmegs Ronaldo before bursting inside! He finds himself with just Diego Lopez to beat but sends his shot straight at the legs of the Madrid 'keeper!
Eight minutes of normal time remaining for Real Madrid to save this. A loss here would mean an six-point gap between themselves and Barcelona, which would be a massive mountain to climb.
Cristiano Ronaldo goes into the book as he gives the referee an earful just after the Barcelona goal. No prizes for guessing what that's about, he's convinced he should have had a penalty for the challenge by Mascherano.
Yellow CardCristiano Ronaldo
Has Alexis Sanchez just decided the Clasico?!
GOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLL FOR BARCELONA!!! WONDERFUL STUFF FROM ALEXIS SANCHEZ! The Chilean finds himself one-on-one with Varane and cuts back before lifting a wonderful chip over Diego Lopez from 20 yards! Fantastic! 2-0 Barca!
Andrés Iniesta Luján
Just under 15 minutes to go now in the Clasico! Can Real Madrid make a dramatic comeback or will Barca press ahead for another?
Ángel Di María
Both sides make another change as Iniesta is replaced by Song for Barcelona and Di Maria is replaced by Jese for Real Madrid.
Barcelona are camped outside the Real Madrid box at the moment and are displaying their tiki-taka style passing attempting to find an opening. Iniesta eventually has a shot which deflects over the bar for a corner kick.
BENZEMA CRASHES A STRIKE OFF THE WOODWORK! The substitute turns sharply on the edge of the area and screws a shot at goal that rattles off the bar! So unlucky, that looked destined for the top corner!
RONALDO IS ADAMANT HE SHOULD HAVE BEEN AWARDED A PENALTY!!! Mascherano finds himself the wrong side of the Portuguese and looks to bundle him over inside the box!! That looked like a spotkick!
First change of the match from Tata Martino as Cesc Fabregas is replaced by Alexis Sanchez.
BENZEMA COMES IN AT THE BACK POST!! A CHANCE MISSED! Marcelo finds himself on the wide left position and stands a cross up to the back post. The Frenchman climbs above Adriano but his attempted header goes upwards over the bar!
Khedira gets a bit of a nosebleed as he finds himself in an advanced position down the right wing. He thinks better of trying to take on Adriano and instead earns a throw in from the Brazilian after a deflected attempted cross.
Xavi has completed 55 out of 59 attempted passes so far, which is more than anyone on the park.
Xavi clips the free kick to the back post looking for Pique but it's Pepe who rises high inside the box to power the ball away.
Marcelo rightly goes into the book! The Brazilian loses the ball to Messi, and in a terrific South American battle, fights for the ball before eventually tugging the shirt of the Argentine. Free kick to Barcelona down the right-hand side. Useful position.
Second substitution of the match from Real Madrid as the world's most expensive player, Bale, is withdrawn on his Clasico debut for Karim Benzema. Los Blancos now have a recognised striker on the pitch.
Yellow CardSami Khedira
Sami Khedira is the latest player to go into the book as he cynically clips the heels of Iniesta as the Barca man was gliding forward. I suppose that's what the German is employed to do in the Clasico, isn't it?
WHAT A SAVE FROM VALDES AGAIN!! Modric wins the ball on the edge of the box and slides a ball through to Ronaldo who takes a touch before driving a strike towards the front post, but he is denied by the Barca 'keeper, who makes a cracking stop!
First change of of the match from Carlo Ancelotti as Sergio Ramos is replaced by Asier Illarremendi. So the Madrid captain goes off in the Clasico? Definitely a talking point.
Fabulous save from Diego Lopez after some super play by Barca!! Iniesta drives a sensational pass over the top of the Madrid defence and Neymar runs through before unleashing a left-footed volley, but the former Sevilla 'keeper remains solid to beat away the Brazilian's attempt!
INIESTAAAA!!! THAT STRIKE WAS GOING PLACES!! A skirmish inside the Madrid box sees the ball break to the 29-year-old on the edge of the box who cracks a spectacularly executed volley towards goal that is just blocked by the Madrid defence! What a goal that would have been!
Ronaldo looks to exchange a one-two with Marcelo down the left-hand side but the Portuguese attempts an over-elaborate backheel which eventually runs out for a Barcelona goal kick.
Sergio Ramos is a lucky, lucky man. The Madrid captain goes in late on Iniesta just on the halfway line and somehow escapes receiving his second yellow card of the match. That's a booking all day long.
You will have noticed a distinct lack of mention for Cristiano Ronaldo in the first half commentary. This is mainly due to the fact that the Portuguese has been desperately starved of service up top, and has barely been in the match.
THE CLASICO IS BACK UNDER WAY!
It's not been a typically fiery affair, but two yellow cards a-piece suggests that the boot has certainly been left in a few times.
In the battle of the Clasico debuts, it's currently Neymar and Martino that are defeating Bale and Ancelotti. Still plenty of time for that to change though.
Perhaps predictably, Barcelona have had the majority of possession so far with 60% to Real Madrid's 40%.
A solitary strike from Neymar is the difference at the break as the Brazilian becomes only the second player from his country to score on his debut against Real Madrid in this clash.
Half time in the Clasico.
Yellow CardGareth Bale
Bale earns a yellow card in his Clasico debut as he goes in with the studs up on Pique. You'd perhaps get away with that in the English Premier League, but not in La Liga.
What a saaaaave from Victor Valdes!!! Ronaldo hits the byline and lashes a cross into the six yard box for Khedira, who slides a close range strike at goal. The Barca 'keeper stretches out a leg to make the stop! The German is demanding a penalty as the ball looked to have nudged the arm of Adriano, but it would have been harsh!
Messi steps up and whips the free kick towards the bottom corner but Pepe sticks out a leg to get in an important clearance. Madrid clear their lines and and move up the park.
Good defending to begin with from Pepe as he keeps up pace with Messi and ushers the Argentine down the right-hand side. The Barca man cuts back inside though and is upended by the defender. Free kick to the Catalans in a useful position down the right flank.
One minor negative for Barcelona so far in this half has been that Messi and Fabregas have both been coming far too deep to receive the ball, which is leaving a lack of bodies in the final third. It's only Neymar up there.
The Camp Nou fans are up in arms as they are demanding a free kick for a foul on Neymar! Messi threaded a glorious pass through the middle of the defence for the Brazilian, who went down under the blocking challenge of Carvajal! No foul given, play on!
I pointed out at the start of the match that Pepe would be playing in the centre of midfield but it's clear from the opening 35 minutes of play that Sergio Ramos is in fact screening the area in front of the defence. You can't say this tactic has worked particularly well so far.
A small period of sustained possession for Real Madrid at the moment. Sadly for them though it's sorely lacking in a cutting edge, with just short passes along the defence. Barca look happy to let them have it for a little while.
It's been pretty criminal how little has been offered from Madrid up top. Barcelona are playing a high line and Los Blancos have three of the fastest players in world football at their disposal in attack.
36 Brazilians have played in the Clasico, and Neymar is the second player after Romario to score on his debut against Real Madrid.
GARETH BALE!!! NOT TOO FAR AWAY! Our first real glimpse of the Welshman sees him cut inside from his position on the right and skip past a couple of challenges before lashing a strike towards the top corner. On this occasion though, it flies off to the left. No danger posed to Valdes.
Excellent covering from Mascherano. Marcelo shows his attacking ambition for the first time in the match as he stretches his legs down the left. He bursts down the wing but the Barca defender comes across with a perfectly timed slide tackle to put the ball out for a throw in.
That goal has really catalysed Barca here. The Camp Nou crowd are cheering for every pass and tackle and Madrid haven't really arrived as of yet, they've been outplayed thus far.
MESSIIIII!!!! HE SHOULD SCORE!!! The Argentine breaks the Madrid offside trap and gallops towards goal from the inside channel before attempting to curl a shot into the bottom corner, but he ends up screwing his strike wide! A massive let-off for the visitors!
AssistAndrés Iniesta Luján
GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAALLLL FOR BARCELONA!!! THE CATALANS LEAD THE CLASICO!!! Iniesta breaks forward and stabs the ball through to Neymar, who cuts back on his right before squeezing a strike into the bottom right corner! It may have taken a deflection off Carvajal on the way through! 1-0!
Great play by Neymar! The former Santos man turns Khedira and Carvajal inside out before lashing a strike at goal from the edge of the box. The final attempt was slightly tame though, and Diego Lopez makes a comfortable save.
Ronaldoooooo! That's way over! The Portuguese finds space 30 yards from goal and rifles a left-footed strike but it goes high, wide, and not very handsome. Doubt that'll stop him having another crack, though!
Yellow CardSergio Ramos
Sergio Ramos earns his signature Clasico yellow card as he bodychecks Neymar after the Brazilian had used some trickery to break down the left-hand side. The Madrid captain will need to be careful now.
Los Blancos have barely managed to get out of their own half so far and its mainly down to the relentless pressing of the Barcelona attack and midfield. Madrid aren't being allowed any time on the ball whatsoever.
Messi collects possession in the hole just in front of the Madrid defence but is met with a sea of white shirts as he attempts to find an opening. He's forced back and lays the ball out to Dani Alves on the right.
Madrid have the opportunity to get a decent ball into the box from a set-piece and Di Maria floats the ball to the back post. Barcelona get the free kick though as Sergio Ramos is all over Busquets.
It's Barcelona who've settled the better of the two rivals so far. They are knocking the ball around confidently and Madrid have started slightly shaky.
Di Maria picks up the ball on the right-hand side and typically shifts the ball on to his left foot before whipping a cross into the box. His target is Ronaldo but the pass floats straight into the grateful hands of Valdes.
Superb interception by Varane. Neymar looks to latch on to a ball over the top of the Madrid defence but the French defender rises high to nod the ball out of the Brazilian's path.
First glimpse of Neymar as the Brazilian picks up the ball from deep and runs at pace towards the Madrid defence. He springs down to the right but is dispossess by Marcelo, who fires the ball out for a throw-in.
We are under way in the Clasico!
A sea of red, blue, and yellow bathes the Camp Nou as the Catalan fans unveil a spectacular mural! Quite a sight!
The players compose themselves are they line-up in the tunnel. No compatriotic pleasantries here!
With that duo making their debuts, it's perhaps been slightly overlooked that the two managers tonight will also have their first taste of Barcelona vs Real Madrid. It's notoriously a tactical battle, so who will come out on top between Martino and Ancelotti?
An interesting sideshow for the match if ofcourse the clash debuts of Neymar and Gareth Bale. Will the new superstars rule the Clasico? Or will Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi once again show who the best in the world are?
There's no pre-match build-up quite like that of the Clasico; the atmosphere in Camp Nou will be absolutely electric!
Historically, Real Madrid have just shaded the Clasico, winning 90 of the 224 competitive matches, with Barcelona winning 86.
They return to Camp Nou tonight though, where they have won their last 19 league matches.
It has not been a particularly productive week for the Catalan side, however. They were held to a draw last weekend by Osasuna and could only manage a stale 1-1 result against AC Milan in the Champions League midweek.
However, the Blaugrana have not defeated the capital club in the Spanish Primera Division for almost two years. Something has to give tonight!
Barcelona have the opportunity to open up a sizeable six-point gap in La Liga over their arch rivals tonight. Even at this early stage in the season, is that insurmountable for Madrid?
Also making his Clasico debut tonight is Barcelona's summer marquee signing, Neymar. The Brazilian was reportedly a target for Madrid in the off season, so now is the time to show he made the right decision in signing for Tata Martino's outfit.
This means that Los Blancos go with a three-pronged attack. Cristiano Ronaldo will spearhead the frontline, with Bale and Angel Di Maria supporting from the wings.
It also looks as if Carlo Ancelotti has opted to go like-for-like in the centre of midfield against Barca. Pepe has been moved further forward and will likely screen the area just in front of the Real Madrid defence.
So Gareth Bale makes his Clasico debut this afternoon. How will the Welshman fair in the tense and fiery atmosphere against Los Cules?
Real Madrid (4-3-3): Diego Lopez; Carvajal, Varane, Sergio Ramos, Marcelo; Modric, Pepe, Khedira; Bale, Ronaldo, Di Maria.
Barcelona (4-3-3): Valdes; Alves, Pique, Mascherano, Adriano; Xavi, Iniesta, Busquets; Fabregas, Messi, Neymar.
The tension mounts as the biggest match on the planet come around for the first time this season. Barcelona vs Real Madrid, Tata Martino vs Carlo Ancelotti, Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo!
I'm Martin Macdonald, and it's my pleasure to take you through the Spanish Primera Division clash between Barcelona and Real Madrid from Camp Nou!
Good evening folks! Welcome to...the Clasico!
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