Intensity, excitement and goals are the three active ingredients in the special recipe that sees Real Madrid CF and FC Barcelona cross paths. The clubs are among the most powerful in Europe and this weekend they be putting on another show for Liga BBVA fans. Read some little-known Clásico statistics and trivia here.
DID YOU KNOW... that 10 players in Barcelona’s current squad have scored against Real Madrid in the Liga BBVA, and 7 of them have done so in the Santiago Bernabéu?
A match such as this guarantees goals, and although Real Madrid have scored a total of 261 against the blaugrana, it has been the Catalans who have celebrated more goals against their nemesis in recent years. Ten players in Gerardo Martino’s current squad know what it is to beat the Whites’ keeper, and seven of them have done so in front of the madridistas: Leo Messi, Pedro Rodríguez, Xavi, Cesc Fàbregas, Gerard Piqué, Alexis Sánchez and Carles Puyol. Madrid however, as a result of changes to the squad in recent seasons, only have five players who have scored in the Clásico. Cristiano Ronaldo, tops the list with 5 goals.
DID YOU KNOW... that Messi is two goals away from equalling Hugo Sánchez as the second highest goal-scorer in the history of the Liga BBVA with 234?
The Barça striker relentlessly raises the bar and he seems set to break any record he comes across. After passing Paulino Alcántara with a hat-trick against CA Osasuna and becoming the top goal-scorer in Barcelona’s history, with 271 goals, he is now within a stone’s throw of becoming the most prolific striker in the Spanish top-flight. Two goals against the Whites in the Bernabéu would equal the mark set by Hugo Sánchez as the second top goal-scorer in the Liga BBVA. So far, Messi has found the net 232 times.
DID YOU KNOW... that Barça have not come into a Clásico in third place since the 2007/08 season?
You have to go back to Frank Rijkaard’s era to find a Barcelona that came into the ‘match of the year’ outside the top two of the Liga BBVA. It was on the 7th of May 2008 and both teams were in the same position as they are this time around. Real Madrid had won the championship the week before against Osasuna and the blaugrana had to form a tunnel for its nemesis. That afternoon the Whites beat Barça 4-1.
DID YOU KNOW... that Barcelona has only lost 1 of its last 5 Bernabéu league Clásicos?
It was last season, when the Whites got out of a rut they found themselves in at home in the Liga BBVA against the Catalan outfit. Benzema and Sergio Ramos brought victory back to Madrid against a Barcelona that had recorded three wins (1-3, 0-2 and 2-6) and a draw (1-1) in the four previous years. Carlo Ancelotti’s men lost 2-1 in the Camp Nou but this time around they will be digging deep to maintain supremacy at home.
DID YOU KNOW... that this will be the first league Clásico in the Bernabéu for Bale, Carvajal, Isco, Illarramendi, Neymar, Bartra, Montoya and Sergi Roberto?
They are young and fortunate because all of them will experience one of the most important clashes in world football first hand. Many of them, such as Dani Carvajal, Marc Bartra, Martín Montoya and Sergi Roberto learnt their trade in their clubs’ academies and will have long dreamt of a day like this, while others, such as Gareth Bale, Asier Illarramendi, Isco and Neymar, will never have imagined starring in a match of such stature. This weekend, they will all have a chance to show off their games and dazzle millions of spectators around the world.