El Clasico 2018

Steven Alvarez, Sports Editor

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What is ‘El Clasico’?  El Clasico is the name given in to any match between longtime rivals Real Madrid and FC Barcelona. Every La Liga season there is 2 matches between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona (One at each home stadium).  Barcelona was hosting the 2018 leg at the Camp Nou Stadium. Barcelona had a position lead on the table 4 points over Madrid which had 14 points. In the last 2 competitions Barcelona won its last 2 games with a total of 6 goals. Madrid lost 1 and won 1 game in the last 2 competitions with 3 goals in total.

Real Madrid’s coach Julen Lopetegui had to get a somewhat satisfying result as the last few games have been going down hill. Ever since his arrival in the summer Real Madrid has seen a drastic decline in performance in years all fingers point  towards Julen Lopetegui.

This was  the first El Clasico in 11 years without both Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. Messi being out for a fracture of the radial bone in his right arm during Barcelona’s game against Sevilla. As for Ronaldo, He was transferred to Italian club Juventus. Ronaldo left with 18 El Clasico goals while Messi leads with 26 goals. People looked for each team’s second top goal scorers  Karim Benzema for Madrid and Luis Suarez for Barcelona. This was also Thibaut Courtois debut in El Clasico. He has faced Barcelona before when he was in Chelsea and Atletico Madrid.

“Without Ronaldo and Messi it is boring there is not that spark of magic in both team” said Tyrone Jordan a Junior at Haynes.

Barcelona starting 11: Ter Stegen(GK), Sergi Roberto, Pique, Lenglet, Jordi Alba, Busquets(C), Rakitic, Arthur, Rafinha, Coutinho, Suarez.

Real Madrid starting 11: Courtois(GK), Nacho, Varane, Ramos(C), Marcelo, Casemiro, Modric, Kroos, Isco, Bale, Benzema.

The match whistle blew at Camp Nou in front of 93,000 spectators and it wasn’t to late from the start when Philippe Coutinho got the opener goal for Barcelona at 11 minutes on the clock. Messi watched on from the stands with his son.

Suarez got his first goal after being fouled by Raphael Varane in the box causing a penalty in favor of Barcelona. VAR (Video Assistant Referee) was used for the first time in a Clasico, it was used to confirm the foul.

In second half Madrid seemed to have a change in more pressured playing tactics and managed to get a goal from Marcelo 50 minutes in to make it 2-1. Madrid at this point had a fighting chance.

Suarez got his second goal at the 75 minute mark with a assist from Sergi Roberto and finished with a header to make it 3-1.

At the 82 minute mark Marcelo got subbed out due to an injury. This made 2 Madrid players with injury as Varane got subbed out in half time.

Sergi Roberto stole the ball from Sergio Ramos and set Suarez up for a goal. Suarez chipped the ball over the goalkeeper. The score at this point was 4-1 at 83 minutes.

After 3 substitutions for Barcelona Ousmane Dembélé and Arturo Vidal entered the field with a few minutes left and Vidal managed to get a header to raise the score 5-1 at the minute 87 with an assist from Dembélé. Vidal was on the field for 3 minutes before scoring.

The final whistle blew with a final score of 5-1 in favor of Barcelona. The last time 5 goals was scored for one team in El Clasico was in 2010 where Barcelona beat Madrid 5-0 under the management of Pep Guardiola. Luis Suarez got Man of the Match with a hat-trick

As for La Liga table positions Barcelona is in 1 with 21 points and Madrid at 9 with 14 points.

“We’ve been doing this all season long, we can’t be talking about the coach because we are not playing well and us players are the ones on the field,” said Casemiro Real Madrid mid fielder. “It’s not a matter of tactics or mentality, it’s everything. This 5-1 is what we’ve been doing all season long. We know we are struggling but we have to stay calm, we can’t talk about the coach because we are the ones to blame, we are not playing well and we’ve got to get to work. This is a disaster. We’re all playing bad and everyone has to step up,” He added

Madrid rumors to have to make a change in management.

 

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