It was again Messi and Bernabeu and the love story continued, Barcelona defeated the Los Blancos by a margin of as great as 3-0.
In a must-win game, Madrid decided to start with Kovacic instead of Isco which did not go well with several Madrid fans but we must say Kovacic’s performance today was one of a kind. He completely contained Busquets and looked decent defensively.
The match started with Ronaldo’s disallowed headed goal as he was offside.
Barca looked a bit shaky in the first 30 mins, losing the ball to the opposition too often because of their poor passing. They had no answer to Real’s long ball plays and were caught up on the counter too often.
Real must be credited for their pressing which made their rivals a bit below standard in the first half.
Alba’s play was commendable as expected as he constantly tracked Real’s runs and closed out the open spaces and what can we say about his nutmeg on Modric. Paulinho’s runs forward eased the pressure off his team and this is why Barcelona was able to handle their opponents in the first half.
Another thing which should be praised is Vermaelen’s professional foul in the first half as almost saved a goal against him. He started in place of Samuel Umtiti and did not let his manager down as he looked solid at the back.
2nd half again started with Real Madrid taking the first shot. It was in the 54th minute when we saw the scoring being opened, thanks to Suarez’s shot to the near post from the assist of Sergi Roberto.
We saw Dani Carvajal acting as a replacement for Keylor Navas in the 64th minute which led to him receiving a Red Card and Barca earning a penalty which Messi grounded with ease. Messi has now become the first player in the history of El-Clasico to score 25 goals.
The substitute Aleix Vidal then scored Barca’s 3rd goal in the additional time and that’s how it all ended.
Messi created 9 goalscoring opportunities today which is a record in a La Liga match this season.
Barcelona is on top of Liga chart with 45 points, 9 points clear of 2nd place Atletico Madrid and 14 points ahead of Los Blancos who stands 4th with a game in hand.