Guardiola may have chosen to rest his starting eleven for the match against Bate Borisov, but the youngsters from the B-squad clarified that the future of FCB was in no near danger. Guardiola chose to rest the more familiar with “El Clasico” merely five days away, and with FCB having solidified their spot in the CL Round of 16.
The youngsters consisted of nine players who have made their way through the Barcelona Academy, and two, dare I say, veterans namely Maxwell and Pedro Rodriguez, who has been struggling with injuries all season. Watching the game, it once again became clear that the style of play that Barcelona is so well known for is one that is ingrained from a very young age.
It may have taken thirty five minutes for the first goal to be scored, but Barcelona remained in complete control of the match, barely granting Bate Borisov any chances. The first goal came from Roberto in the 35th, and that would be the only goal scored during the first half.
However, it was the second half that saw FCB hand out a beating starting with the second goal in the 60th from Montoya, and merely three minutes later, a third by Pedro would seemingly solidify the win for Barcelona.
The beating was not over – and in the 88th, a penalty that was taken by Pedro would make the final score 4-0. Certainly not a bad day for the B-squad as the starting eleven beat Bate Borisov 5-0.
More importantly was the anticipation and buildup to the first “El Clasico” of this season; the last time FCB met Real Madrid was on April 16th at the Bernabeau and the match ended in a draw. The five meetings before , FCB was victorious (these statistics do not include Copa del Rey).
A grand total of 163 matches with Real Madrid still leading in victories with 69 to Barcelona’s 63, but perhaps more importantly will be the “Messi v. Ronaldo”-matchup; two players both up for Ballon d’Or, both players at the top of their game, both players the keynote strikers for their respective teams.
It is no secret that these two teams are considered the best in the world by many, and with the flawless seasons both squads have had, the match on Saturday is a highly anticipated one.
Surely, most would prefer a win over a tie, but with both teams having solid lineups – this could go either way.
If Real Madrid can avoid being scored on first or early in the match and maintain their composure, it will be their key to success, while FCB , regardless of their stellar season thus far, has had some slight issues with their defense and if they are not fully aware of intensifying their defense, especially against Real Madrid, it could lead to their demise.
Both teams have more than one skilled striker, but then again both also posses two of the best goalkeepers in the world; Casillas with seven clean sheets this season, while Valdes stands at ten.
Fabregas spoke with Barca TV in a candid interview stating; “We are going to the Bernabeu to win, and will do it with bravery and courage”. This game is more than a rivalry – it is also a chance for Barcelona to equalize the playing ground in the La Liga Standings.
The game is set for December 10th at 2:30 EST on ESPN.
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