La Liga 2016-17: Barcelona 1-1 Real Madrid - Five Talking Points
- What an intense, dramatic and exciting game it was in the Camp Nou as Real Madrid break Barcelona hearts with a late equaliser.
The world witnessed an incredible game between Real Madrid and Barcelona in the first El Clasico of the 2016-17 season. Goals from Luis Suarez and Sergio Ramos ensured that both teams get a point of the game which sees Real Madrid maintain its 6 point lead over Barcelona.
After a fantastic first half where Barcelona was marginally the better team, the Catalans came out all guns blazing in the second half. Luis Suarez gave Barcelona the lead which was followed by a spell of fantastic football from the team in red and blue. However, Neymar and Messi were unable to convert their chances and Sergio Ramos did what he is best known for – score a late header - to break the hearts of the Barcelona faithful.
The biggest positive for Luis Enrique would be Andres Iniesta’s return. The captain looked in great touch and added a lot of composure to Barcelona’s attack. Real Madrid, on the other hand, gave youngsters Marco Asensio and Mariano Diaz a chance on the biggest stage of them all.
All this and more as here are the five talking points from an intense game:
#1 Barcelona win the midfield battle
Going into their biggest game of the season, Barcelona was struggling for form. Ivan Rakitic had a string of mediocre performances while Sergio Busquets had a horror show against Real Sociedad. However, tonight, Ivan Rakitic stepped up his game while Busquets delivered the performance of his season so far. Portuguese midfielder Andre Gomes had a fantastic game in midfield as well.
Real Madrid was clearly missing Toni Kroos and Casemiro as Mateo Kovacic despite showing signs of class was simply unable to deal with Barcelona’s pressure. Isco started off the game well but Sergio Busquets gave the ex-Malaga man a horrible time on the pitch leaving him for dead with a Cryuff turn on one occasion. Busquets delivered what could be called a footballing masterclass this evening.
Iniesta’s introduction upped the tempo in Barcelona’s game and the Catalans clearly dominated in the midfield this evening. However, the only negatives from Barcelona in midfield was Arda Turan giving away a silly free kick that led to Sergio Ramos’ goal. Denis Suarez had very little to do in the limited time he spent on the pitch while Marco Asensio had a positive effect on Real Madrid.