Why is there a rivalry between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid? Explaining the fiercest rivalry before El Clasico

Barcelona cruised to a La Liga title last season, marking a seemingly easy transition for Xavi, who was enjoying his first full season as the club’s manager. The Catalan club had gone through a tough period under former president Josep Maria Bartomeu, falling into the shadow of Real Madrid and losing their European reputation.

Despite their slow start to the season and injury problems, Barcelona will give Real Madrid a run for their money when they meet in the first El Clasico fixture of the season. With the match looking to dominate the headlines next weekend, we look at the history of the rivalry.

Why is there a rivalry between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid?

The El Clasico is by far the most popular club fixture in the world, commanding an average global audience of about 500 million. The hype surrounding this match is so immense that it has become a fixture in the football calendar, something soccer fans around the globe look forward to, even those with no affiliation to either club.

El Clasico has seen some of the greatest players of all time grace the pitch. From Diego Maradona to Puskas, Lionel Messi to Cristiano Ronaldo, Johan Cruyff to Di Stefano, and even great managers like Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola.

“For a player, El Clasico is the most beautiful match that exists in football,” Zinedine Zidane once said. But one would wonder, what makes the El Clasico so special? What is the story behind the rivalry between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid that makes the El Clasico so tense whenever both teams face off?

The rivalry dates back several decades. Some even claim it is beyond football, as both clubs represented different political ideologies some years ago and now. As some may know, Barcelona has always supported the Catalan cause, fighting for the independence of Catalunya, something that has always been a thorn in the side of the Spanish Government.

And, of course, the rivalry between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi added more fuel to the fire between both clubs.

El Clasico: FC Barcelona vs Real Madrid on October 28

The first El Clasico of the season will be played on October 28 at the Camp Nou Spotify stadium. While the fixture hasn’t been the same since the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi from La Liga, it remains one of the most anticipated games in club football, and this season’s fixture will be no different.

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Source: YouTube

Real Madrid travels to Barcelona at the top of the league but could leave the stadium with Xavi’s men ahead of them if they lose. The Los Blancos have been in fine form this season, thanks to Jude Bellingham’s prowess in front of goals. The former Borussia Dortmund star has eight league goals in ten games so far, winning himself the La Liga Player of the Month for August.

Barcelona, on the other hand, has been hit by injuries to high-profile players like Lewandowski, Raphinha, Frenkie de Jong, Pedri, and Jules Kounde. They sit third on the table, one point behind Real Madrid and Girona, who occupy first and second places, respectively.

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Source: Managing Madrid

Can Xavi’s men change the balance and go to the top of the table by beating Real Madrid? Tell us your predictions in the comments section.


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