Los Blancos defeated Barcelona at home for the first time in seven years
Los Blancos secured the crucial 2-0 win and El Clasico has been an event of fairytales and bright moments probably since the rivalry started. Lionel Messi scored his first hat-trick in an EL Clasico. Ronaldinho and Iniesta got standing ovations from the Bernabeu crowd.
Cristiano Ronaldo has calmed the Camp Nou with his iconic celebration. Yesterday, it was the turn of Vinicius Junior and Mariano Diaz to experience the magic of the derby.
The youngsters won the match for their team through two very sublime strikes. Real Madrid won 2-0 which is their first Clasico win at home after seven years.
How the events unfolded at Bernabeu
It was Real Madrid who first injected life into the game after the very first minute. Both the teams created multiple chances in the first half. However, it was Barcelona who created the best chances. Their first breakthrough the Real defence came in the form of Arthur. The Brazilian cut through the wings on the left and tried to chip the ball over Thibaut Courtois. The Belgian keeper kept in away. Messi also had a couple of great chances which he shot straight at Courtois.
The second half was all about Real. Los Blancos put the pressure on Barcelona from the very first minute, with the Catalans involved more in defence rather than attack.
Real could have gone two goals early but Isco was denied twice by the brilliance of Marc-Andre Ter Stegen. However, Vinicius Junior scored one past the German in the near post. Mariano Diaz came on during injury time and scored with his first touch on the ball. This was his first match in this league season.
Vinicius Junior- The young Brazilian looked a threat from the very first minute with his runs into the box and the crosses. Had they been converted by Benzema, Madrid could have won by a larger margin. He became the hero as he scored the first goal in the 71st minute and dedicated it to Cristiano Ronaldo who was sitting in the stands.
Fede Valverde- This young Uruguayan is improving with every passing match. Last night, he was all over the match. He could be found in the defence creating a solid wall of five when Barca were attacking, and he would run up the field to assist in the attack. Deserving player of the match.
Casemiro- Probably the best defending midfielder in the world right now, he made sure to keep the whole Barca frontline in check.
Marc-Andre Ter Stegen- Undoubtedly the best Barcelona player on the pitch yesterday. He made two crucial saves from lethal shots by Isco. Also was very instrumental in creating play from the back.
Gerard Pique- Pique was on the top of his game after so many days. He made important tackles and also made a crucial goal-line save.
Jordi Alba- Alba was absolutely horrible last night. He tried to go up in the attack, but in the process left huge gaps in defence for Carvajal and Valverde to exploit. He also gave away the ball multiple times.
Lionel Messi- The little magician had a night to forget. He was invisible for most of the game. He wasted the chances he got and was kept in check by Marcelo and Casemiro. Messi might have had an injury, but such performance is not expected from La Pulga.
Karim Benzema– Same as Messi, Benzema had a horrible night. He missed many of the chances and was found mostly on the wings rather than in the centre. This is his 10th consecutive games in which he failed to score.
Barcelona’s statistics – Many of it did not make sense. There was no reason to start Vidal over Fati or Braithwaite in the attack. Griezmann is not a poacher like Suarez and providing him with that role is proving to be unproductive. Messi is taking on a dual role of goalscorer and playmaker which is affecting his ability to score. There is no reason he should be defending in his half. But the worst was Barca’s laid back attitude after going down by a goal. Instead of trying to push upward with force, they were more involved in square and back passes. Pep Guardiola exploited Real’s vulnerability on the wings and won at Bernabeu. However, Barcelona still tried to create from the middle rather than putting crosses in the box. Setien really needs to work on such factors.