Category Archives: spain

Real Madrid now leads the Clasico history

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Over recent years, Barcelona have equaled and even surpassed Real Madrid in number of victories in Clásicos across all competitions but find themselves behind.


The first Clásico of the 2020/21 LaLiga between Barcelona and Real Madrid at Camp Nou went the way of the visitors in a very entertaining affair. It was the 245th match that the two Spanish giants had played against each other, with both teams fighting for the top spot of the domestic tournament.

In their previous meeting Los Blancos beat the Catalan side back in March, in a season that ended up with Real Madrid winning the championship.

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The Clásicos: the head to head
As well as the 254 competitive games, Barça and Madrid have met another 34 times in friendlies and other exhibition matches.

Their overall head-to-head record has been extremely tight. Real’s latest win bputs them one ahead of Barça with 97 wins vs 96.

Games played: 182

Madrid wins: 74

Barça wins: 72

Draws: 36

Games played: 36

Madrid wins: 12

Barça wins: 16

Draws: 8

Games played: 8

Madrid wins: 3

Barça wins: 2

Draws: 3

Games played: 20

Madrid wins: 8

Barça wins: 6

Draws: 6

Games played: 245

Madrid wins: 97

Barça wins: 96

Draws: 52

The Guardiola era, a ‘Real’ boost for Barça
Madrid had a notable advantage over Barcelona at the beginning of the 2000s, but the arrival of Pep Guardiola to the Barcelona bench turned the situation around.

In La Liga, Barça have won 13 of the Clasicos played since Guardiola’s appointment, drawing four and losing four. They also won the 2010-11 Champions League semi-final, (0-2 at Santiago Bernabéu, 1-1 at Camp Nou).

Barcelona, Real Madrid… and the trophies
The debate over which is the most decorated club in Spanish football continues and will probably remain in the conversation for a long time.

Real Madrid have a total of 119 trophy wins over their history in all competitions (includes regional, national, continental and global), while Barcelona have gathered 129 titles.

Los Merengues dominate in main competitions, with 34 Spanish leagues and 11 European Cups; Barcelona have a higher number of total trophies.

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  • Real Madrid (23): 18 Championships of Madrid and 5 Mancomunado Trophies.
  • Barcelona (33): 23 Catalonian Championships and 10 Catalonian Cups (8 Cups and 2 Super Cups).
  • Real Madrid (65): 34 leagues, 19 Cups, 11 Spanish Super Cups, 1 League Cup and 1 Copa Eva Duarte.
  • Barcelona (74): 26 leagues, 30 Cups, 12 Spanish Super Cups, 2 League Cups and 1 Copa Eva Duarte.
  • Real Madrid (21): 13 European Cups (6 European Cups and 7 Champions Leagues), 2 UEFA Cups (forerunner of the Europa League), 4 European Super Cups and 2 Latin Cups.
  • Barcelona (19): 5 European Cups (1 European Cup and 4 Champions Leagues), 4 Cup Winners’ Cups, 5 European Super Cups, 3 Fairs Cups (forerunner of the UEFA Cup), and 2 Latin Cups (which laid the ground for the European Cup).
  • Real Madrid (10): 4 Club World Cups, 1 Ibero-American Cup, 3 Intercontinental Cups and 2 Small World Cups.
  • Barcelona (3): 3 Club World Cups.

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Court Instructs Newspaper to pay fine to Lionel Messi

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Spanish daily newspaper, ABC, has been instructed by the courts to pay a fine of 7,142 euros to the Leo Messi Foundation, as a result of publishing false information about the Argentine’s charity.


The publication detailed a new scandal which suggested Messi was involved in further tax fraud, however that was proven to be false information and libellous.

“The information published is not true, but the sentence can be appealed,” the court stated.

“The headlines and words have been used to try and make the reader believe there has been a possible tax crime committed by the foundation.”

Barcelona, on the other hand, have decided against taking legal action against the same newspaper after an unsavoury incident occurred on Tuesday with writer, Salvador Sostres, said: “Ansu Fati in full flight has something of a gazelle about him, of a very young, black street seller that you suddenly see running along [Paseo de Gracia] when someone shouting ‘water, water’ [to warn other street sellers] announced that the local police have arrived.”


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Both teams needs the win; ‘Blockbuster El Classico Will be tough’

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The Clasico is always billed as a blockbuster. It’s usually a thriller, occasionally a horror story for one of the two sides. But this Saturday, with 99,000 empty seats, it will feel more like a silent movie, and a very strange one at that.

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Rarely have both clubs come into the fixture in so much turmoil. Madrid are in pieces on the pitch after two of their worst performances under Zinedine Zidane. And Barcelona are in bits off it with boardroom dramas a constant in the Catalan capital.

Madrid are suffering off the pitch too, in as much as they share Barcelona’s financial concerns. And not everything is perfect on the field for Barca who slipped up last weekend away to Getafe, making it the first day in which both of the big two had lost without scoring since 2000.

It was in May of the 1999-2000 season that Barca lost 2-0 to Rayo Vallecano while Real Madrid were beaten 1-0 by Alaves. The Clasicos that season ended 3-0 to Real Madrid and 2-2. Deportivo won the league.

There is a feeling that ‘someone else’ could win the league this season too if Madrid continue to stumble and Barcelona buckle under the weight of boardroom upheaval.

After losing 3-2 to Shakhtar Donetsk on Wednesday, Madrid media speculated over who would have been jeered the most had the defeat taken place in a full Santiago Bernabeu.

‘Heading for Europa League’ read one sarcastic headline. In this group that is maybe not beyond the realms of possibility for Real Madrid.

One columnist accused Zidane of picking the team by just throwing oranges in the air and seeing where they land. He is currently not helped by injuries to Eden Hazard and Martin Odegaard who were meant to make a difference at the end of a summer marked by the absence of signings for the first time in 20 years, but there has been a ‘lucky dip’ element to his XIs with wild switches from two wingers in a 4-3-3 to 4-4-2 with no wingers.

On Wednesday night he benched Vinicius and Benzema even though Madrid were missing their captain at the other end of the pitch.

Much was made of the chaos that always ensues when Sergio Ramos is missing and it’s true that Madrid have lost to Manchester City and Ajax, Juventus and PSG without him but he was there in the first half at the weekend and it was his mistake which led to Cadiz’s goal, so this is not just about one important player missing.

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Barcelona’s problems on the pitch seem far smaller. What to do with Griezmann is currently Koeman’s biggest headache. How Madrid would love to have the Frenchman in their team. Barcelona’s cast of a thousand forwards (Messi, Ansu Fati, Dembele, Pedri, Francisco Trincao) might lack a centre-forward but it beats Madrid’s depleted troupe hands down right now.

That’s the most striking thing about this Madrid team – there is nothing to excite and nothing to rely on. At this juncture the £163m (180m euros) on Hazard and Luka Jovic looks to have been money badly spent.

The young Brazilians Vinicius and Rodrigo Goes are not progressing sufficiently under Zinedine Zidane and with Marco Asensio unable to make a consistent impact on games, it’s a Madrid team that no longer frightens opposition defences.

While things are currently not as bad on the pitch for Barcelona, off it the club continues to stumble from one drama to the next. There is a projected £271m (300m euros) shortfall in revenue this season that can only be tackled by big cuts in the wage bill.

The tactic of persuading players to, in effect, receive the same amount of money but over a longer period has worked with Frenkie de Jong, Gerard Pique, Marc-Andre ter Stegen and Clement Lenglet who have all extended contracts, but not, so far, with others.

Meanwhile, a petition to force a referendum on whether the board should be able to see out their term of office until March 2021, one that needed 16,500 names, gathered over 20,000.

Only the problems of how to stage the referendum during a pandemic can now delay the president being dumped before December with elections in January.

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Madrid are not showing the same overt signs of chaos but they are also bracing themselves for a huge drop in revenue.

The big two in Spain make more money from football tourism and full stadiums than, arguably, any club in Europe and nothing like a Clasico behind closed doors will remind them of what they are currently missing out on.

Never before has the fixture taken place without fans – every groan from the technical area will be heard. Koeman knows only about playing against Madrid. He was victorious six times with three draws and five defeats during his career.

Zinedine Zidane has never lost at the Nou Camp as a coach with two wins and three draws to date. His position will be under greater scrutiny than ever if he slips us this time.

A gentle campaign around Real Madrid Castilla coach Raul being his replacement-in-waiting has already started to pick up speed. It will find another gear on Saturday if Real Madrid lose the weirdest of Clasicos.

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Shocking: Neymar still owes Spain ‘A tax worth €35m’

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Spain’s tax agency have released their annual list of people and companies who owed more than 1m euros in taxes at the end of 2019.

With a debt of 34.6m euros, Neymar is one of the most high-profile names to appear on this year’s list.

Various clubs also appear, with Real Murcia owing 10.7m euros in back taxes, Hercules 3.7m euros, Lleida Sportiu 1.5m euros, Real Jaen 1.2m euros and Reus Deportiu 1.1m euros.

Girona’s basketball team owe 10m euros, Atletico Alcantarilla 1.8m euros and Balonmano Neptuno 1m euros.

Retired Argentine footballer Gabriel Milito appears with 1.8m euros and former MotoGP rider Alfonso ‘Sito’ Pons has 1.9m euros of debt, after also appearing on the list in 2019.


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Ansu Fati becomes Spain’s ever youngest Goalscorer

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After seeing a goal against Germany ruled out during the week, Ansu Fati became Spain’s youngest ever goalscorer as he scored their third goal against Ukraine on Sunday evening.

A Sergio Ramos foul meant that his header in Stuttgart didn’t stand, but the Barcelona forward made sure that he didn’t have much longer to wait as La Roja hosted Ukraine at Real Madrid’s Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano.

Spain led inside three minutes through a Sergio Ramos penalty, which was won by Ansu Fati himself and the Madrid captain added a second shortly after.

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Then, after the half hour mark, the teenager took centre stage. Squaring up to a Ukraine defender on the edge of the area, he shifted the ball onto his right foot and fired across goal to find the net via the foot of the post.

With the strike, he became Spain’s youngest ever scorer at 17 years and 311 days old.

Juan Errazquin had previously held the record at 18 years and 344 days old with his goal on June 1, 1925 against Switzerland, when he bagged a hat-trick.

A year has passed since he scored his first goals for Barcelona’s first team, and Ansu Fati just keeps on growing.

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‘Here in Spain, We have different ways of scoring goal’ – Luis Enrique

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Luis Enrique is happy in his belief that Spain have enough goals in all areas of the pitch to succeed without a prolific No.9.

La Roja put four past Ukraine on Sunday evening with Sergio Ramos scoring twice before both Ansu Fati and Ferran Torres scored their first international goals.

“We may not have a goalscoring No.9, but we have a lot of ways to get to goal,” Luis Enrique said after the match.

“Our top scorer is a defender.

“But I know that if the result had been bad, it would have been said that we don’t have a goalscorer.”

Sergio Ramos’ two goals made him international football’s highest scoring defender and the former Barcelona boss is looking forward to a successful spell of working with the Real Madrid captain.

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“I hope he achieves a lot more with the national team,” Luis Enrique said.

“He’s a leader but with more than words. He is an example and that’s how he leads.

“Having Sergio Ramos [in a team] is very easy for a coach.”

Ansu Fati broke his own record on Sunday as he netted to become Spain’s youngest ever goalscorer and he made a good impression on his coach.

“I’m not worried, I’m sure his head won’t blow up, he’s a very humble guy,” the boss added.

“We know how to manage him.

“Even though I know him, he surprised me to do that [win a penalty] in the second minute].

“He’ll have some bad games, but his self-confidence isn’t normal.”

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‘Spain’s coach have a difficult Job’ – Sergio Ramos

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Sergio Ramos ended Spain’s win over Ukraine even more impressed with the young talent at Luis Enrique’s disposal.

The Real Madrid captain broke Daniel Passarella’s record as international record’s highest scoring defender on the night, but his attention was taken by the debutants.

“The coach has a difficult job,” Ramos said after the game.

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“He has very young but experienced kids.

“Anybody can play and that’s an important thing.”

Pushed to talk about his new record, the defender did acknowledge his delight to have overtaken the former Argentina international.

“It’s a record I had in mind,” Ramos said. “I’m very happy.”

Ansu Fati stole most of the attention on the night as he became Spain’s youngest ever goalscorer with their third goal on the night.

“We have to congratulate Ansu,” Ramos added.

“The youngsters have come here with a lot of desire, they bring freshness and youth and it’s a joy to have that profile of player.

“What’s expected of them isn’t easy for a kid, but they’ve shown themselves [to be good].”

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‘I’ve been inspired here since the first day’ – Ansu Fati

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Ansu Fati is already feeling at home in the Spain camp after his first two international appearances.

The Barcelona forward became his country’s youngest ever goalscorer with a find strike against Ukraine on Sunday, just days after becoming their second youngest appearance maker against Germany.

“It gives me pride to work with Luis [Enrique] and the players who are here,” Ansu Fati said after the game.

“From the first day I’ve been welcomed with open arms and all the confidence in the world.

“Now I’ve to keep working as always with humility and everything will come.”

Understandably happy with his goal, the 17-year-old was quick to say that it was Spain’s convincing win that pleased him most.

“I’m happy, especially with the victory,” he added.

“We played well for 90 minutes and have to keep going like this.”

Now, attention will turn back to club football where Fati will be working under Ronald Koeman at the Camp Nou this season.

“I’ll keep working,” Fati said.

“The coach is the one who decides [who plays].

“I’ll keep training hard and if the chance comes then I’ll try to take advantage of it.”

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