FC Barcelona vs Real Madrid: Three key individual battles on the pitch that will shape the outcome of the match
FC Barcelona facing Real Madrid is one of the most anticipated and widely viewed matches in club football and football fans around the world look forward to 'El Clasico' every season. Over the years, we had all the recipes of an entertaining tale - late goals, drama and heated battles and we can surely hope that there will not be any shortage of entertainment tonight.
No team has beaten Real Madrid more times than Barcelona and similarly, Barcelona suffered most defeats against Real Madrid in La Liga. El Clasico is a historically renowned rivalry and its impact goes beyond football.
Barcelona will host Real Madrid at Camp Nou in the Copa Del Rey semi finals tonight. It goes without saying that there are a number of megastars who can change the complexion of the tie and will fight individual battles on the pitch.
Without further ado, let us quickly evaluate three key battles which will change the tie tonight.
#1. Lionel Messi versus Sergio Ramos
Both these superstars are the leaders of their respective teams and both were a part of heated battles over the last decade.
Lionel Messi needs no introduction. The Argentine is the all-time top goalscorer in El Clásico history, and Real Madrid are one of the sides against whom he has been at his most prolific. He has scored 25 goals in 37 games against Los Blancos (17 in LaLiga, 6 in the Spanish Super Cup and 2 in the Champions League).
On the other hand, Sergio Ramos is the undisputed leader of the Los Blancos. He is beyond doubt a pivotal part of this Real Madrid side which made history in the Champions League. The Spanish captain has saved Real Madrid, not just with his defensive capabilities but also with goals when necessary.
As evident from past history, Messi got the better of Ramos on numerous occasions and managed to get the player sent off. Sergio Ramos must bring out his best tonight and keep his calm as his good run of form coincides with Real Madrid's good run.