Three days after a very entertaining match at Camp Nou, the second El Clásico of the season takes place tonight at the Santiago Bernabéu as Barcelona face Real Madrid in the second leg of the Spanish Super Cup.
Los Blancos came out on top in the first leg, winning 3-1 away from home despite losing Cristiano Ronaldo to a red card and a five-match suspension. Madrid were dominant in the second half and basically killed Barcelona on the counter, and they’ll be hoping to do the same to clinch the title.
For Barça, winning the Supercopa is a nearly impossible task. Only a three-goal victory or a 4-2 win will give them the title, and given how the first match went, it’s hard to see the Blaugrana pulling off what is essentially a miracle at the home of the European champions.
But Barcelona have Lionel Messi, and if you have Lionel Messi, you have a chance. Messi loves to play at the Bernabéu, having won 9 matches and scored 14 goals in Madrid’s home during his incredible career, and the greatest player of all time would love to have another amazing performance at the Bernabéu.
This will be another very fun Clásico, and you really should not miss it. You might miss a Messi Miracle.
Date: Wednesday, Aug. 16
Time: 10 p.m. BST, 5 p.m. ET
TV Info: Live on Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Football (UK) and ESPN2 (U.S.)
Live Stream: LIVE US TV
Sunday’s El Clasico was one to savour. There were some remarkable goals, fierce intensity and plenty of controversy.
Ronaldo’s 24-minute cameo was notable for his contribution to Real’s victory—he scored an excellent goal—and the fact he was issued with two yellow cards before pushing the referee in reaction to his dismissal.
The Portuguese superstar has now been suspended for five games:
Barca will be buoyed by the fact Zinedine Zidane’s side will be without their talisman, but Real have other players in fine form who could make Ronaldo’s absence less signficant.
Of the starting XI on Sunday, Isco, Mateo Kovacic, Raphael Varane, and Sergio Ramos particularly impressed at the Camp Nou, while Asensio, 21, was brilliant after coming off the bench with 22 minutes to go.
Barcelona, on the other hand, looked rusty as a unit, with Gerard Deulofeu an obvious weakness in the left-flank berth previously occupied by Neymar.
History is against the Blaugrana in their attempts to overturn the deficit at the Bernabeu and lift the Super Cup on Wednesday, per Sky Sports Statto:
Real have become used to picking up silverware of late. They beat Manchester United to claim the UEFA Super Cup earlier this month and won the UEFA Champions League for the second consecutive season in June to go with their La Liga title.
It is Ernesto Valverde’s Barca side who will have to take the initiative on Wednesday, as they likely must net the first goal if they are to produce a comeback in the second leg.
An upturn in form from the Catalan giants is much needed, though, if they are to prevent archrivals Real from lifting another trophy.