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As it happened: Real Madrid v Barcelona, La Liga

It was some game.

  • Real Madrid Casemiro 28', J. Rodríguez 85'
    2
  • Barcelona L. Messi 33', I. Rakitić 73', L. Messi 90' +2'
    3
Image : Francisco Seco
35,489 Views 43 Comments

Buenas tardes, futbol amigos!

It’s only one of the great nights in the world football calendar.

Barcelona’s visit to Real Madrid is moments away and we’re going minute-by-hostile-minute. Do join us.

Fresh from a trip to Mayo this weekend, Sergio Gardcia just emerged from the tunnel in his new green jacket and kicked us off.

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Big shout for a penalty.

Ronaldo goes down under a challenge from Umtiti. The referee waves it off but replay suggest that could well have been a spotter.

Suarez knows he’s in for a long shift.

The Barcelona striker looks in some discomfort. He tried to ‘meg Sergio Ramos — not Garcia — but he’s clattered by Casemiro and he collides with Ramos’s knee.

Very early booking for Casemero for a cynical foul on Messi in the middle of the park. Well deserved and could be crucial later on.

It’s all Barca now who are stringing pass after pass together and Messi looks to be straining at the leash. He broke clear with speed there from midfield but passed rather than drive into the box.

Real, as we know, can break through Ronaldo and Bale at any time though.

Good move from Real orchestrated by Modric with Benzema ultimately shooting at Ter Stegen.

Moments later at the other end, Suarez wastes a fairly good chance. This is pretty open.

Marcelo just — accidentally – smashed an elbow into Messi and he’s bleeding from his mouth. He’s yet to get back on.

In the meantime, Bale took a shot early when he should perhaps have taken it down.

Great pressing from Barcelona, led by one Lionel Messi, to win back possession seconds after they lose it. Real ultimately counter press and win a corner through Pique’s tackle on Bale.

The Barca defender gets up and appeals for calm.

That’s controversial.

Half the Real Madrid squad seemed offside but it wasn’t given. Perhaps they were deemed not to be interfering with play.

Nevertheless, when the ball was played in, Sergio Ramos hit the post and Casemiro was there to bundle home the rebound.

What a goal.

Messi breaks Di Stefano’s El Clasico scoring record, we’re told, and what a way to do it.

He breaks into the box and sends Carvajal for a cafe con leche with an unreal swerve. You know the rest.

Great strike from Modric from about 30 yards out maybe, forcing a good full-length save from Ter Stegen.

Bale is down holding his ankle meanwhile.

Yeah, that’s the end of Bale’s evening. Real are down to 10 at the moment.

Asensio is on for the Welsh winger. Umtiti earns himself a booking for kicking Ronaldo’s ankle meanwhile. Worth it.

Barca are flying now and Messi — with a mouth full of blood — looks like he has a point to prove. He’s cranky.

Two additional minutes in the first half.

What a miss!

Navas missed a cross, due to a Suarez nudge, and the Barcelona No 10 failed to score.

What a half.

Let us know what you made of a frantic first 45 in the comments.

Excellent early move. Asensio drives on from midfield, the ball’s driven across by Carvajal but Pique stretches to cut it out and put the ball behind for a corner.

Real have started well.

Ter Stegen has had a great night so far and he just added to his showreel with an amazing reflex save from Benzema.

This is end-to-end.

Casemiro, who’s lucky to be on the pitch, fairly dispossessed Messi outside the box but was deemed to have fouled him. The Argentine wasted the free.

Seconds earlier, Alcacer toe pokes a shot at goal but Navas saves. He should have done better.

Great save! Pique gets a good header on a corner but Navas reacts brilliantly.

Oooh! That would’ve been spectacular. Ronaldo was backing off under a cross to the back post and tried a scissors kick rather than stick a head on it. No luck this time.

Asensio puts it on a plate for Ronaldo again but, leaning back, the Portuguese lifts it over the bar.

Navas saves from Suarez! Iniesta dinks a diagonal ball from the outside of his boot to the Barca striker. The Uruguayan gets over the ball and manages to direct it on target but Navas again gets behind it.

Asensio is flying since he was introduced in place of the injured Bale. The young Real forward almost beat Ter Stegen at his near post but again, the keeper came out on top.

Wow. This title race is on.

The Croatian’s eighth goal of the season was a worldy. He turned inside and pinged one into the only place it could go.

That’s well deserved. Ramos steamed in two footed on Messi and he leaves clapping sarcastically and gesticulating at the crowd.

 

He can join Sergio Garcia a little earlier at least. 12 minutes left and this is intense.

Pique — for some reason — found himself in the striker’s position with the ball at his feet. He actually didn’t do much wrong but Navas again saves from close range.

Jmes is about to come on.

Great goal. The Colombian gets in at the near post and turns it home.

And they’re looking for a winner now.

We’re well into the two minutes of added time. Will there be one more twist?

A great move ends with Alba cutting it back and Messi lashes it home. Amazing stuff.

That’s all folks. That was an amazing, hugely-enjoyable game of football.

What did you make of it?

Here’s how the table looks now. Level on points, though Real have that game in hand.

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Both sides play in midweek.

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