Barcelona 0-0 Real Madrid: 5 things we learned from this season’s El Clasico opener

Barcelona 0-0 Real Madrid 5 things we learned from this season’s El Clasico opener

The La Liga table still remains tight at the top as this season’s inaugural El Clasico pitting FC Barcelona and Real Madrid ends in a draw.

Here are five things we learned from the goalless match.

1. The first in 50 Clasicos to end 0-0

For the first time in 17 years, the Clasico ended goalless.

Casemiro nearly opened the scoring in the 17th minute with a downward header, but Gerard Pique stood tall to deflect the ball off the goal line.

Sergio Ramos saved a goal in similar fashion in the 31st minute, after Messi one-timed a shot off a Thibaut Courtois deflection.

Jordi Alba also missed a volley wide of the far post just before halftime while VAR ruled Gareth Bale’s second-half goal offside.

2. Ramos makes the most appearances in El Clasico history

Sergio Ramos now holds the record for most El Clasico appearances with 43, overtaking Manolo Sanchís, Francisco Gento, and Xavi. Messi remains second with 42.

Real Madrid president Florentino Pérez presented the veteran defender with a special kit after the match.

Los Blancos captain was heavily involved in the feisty match, making a clearance off a Lionel Messi shot in the first half.

“When you don’t win a game, you don’t go away happy, but to get a result here is positive. Today we saw a great Real Madrid with lots of personality in a very difficult ground to come to,” said Ramos after the match.

3. Zidane remains undefeated at Camp Nou

With tonight’s draw, Zinedine Zidane is the first Real Madrid manager to go unbeaten at the Camp Nou for 5 consecutive games.

If anyone was doubting Zizou’s return to Madrid, they aren’t anymore. In addition to his tactical acumen, Zidane has injected emotion and confidence into the Real Madrid side while turning Kroos, Casemiro, Isco, and Varane into their former selves. Benzema has also turned into a goal-machine under Zizou’s leadership.

Zidane has steadied the Real Madrid ship, to say the least.

“We played a good game. We remained concentrated for 90 minutes against a great team. Only the goals were missing,” said Zidane at the post-match conference.

And with 3 wins and 2 draws, Zidane’s invincible streak lives on at Camp Nou.

4. Locked at 36 points

Tonight’s draw means both sides remain tied with 72 wins apiece in La Liga, in what has become one of the biggest rivalries in sports.

The stalemate also means both sides remain dead even with 36 points each in La Liga table, with Barca only ahead by a goal difference of two.

This season may very well come down to when the two teams meet again at the Santiago Bernabéu on March 1 next year.

5. Pro-independence protests erupt outside Camp Nou

El Clasico was postponed in October because of the political unrest across Catalonia.

Nine Catalan separatist leaders were jailed this October by Spain’s Supreme Court for their involvement in 2017’s referendum to separate from Spain.

While the game went on without a hitch, minus a brief halt in the second half as pro-independence fans threw inflatable balls onto the pitch, violence erupted outside the stadium.

According to the Guardian, police arrest five people while dozens of others were hurt.

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