Well, the matches between Barca and Madrid recently were not as glamorous as they used to be. Not after Mourinho left Madrid a few years ago. Madrid were stronger back then, Ronaldo was younger, and Mou knew how to play with people minds.
This season in La Liga, Real Madrid could not even compete with capital rivals Atletico. And as we all know, Ozil, Di Maria, and Higuain are no longer there.
Barcelona, on the other hand, have found their rhythm again. And they are getting stronger. First, Barca found another manager who understand Johan Cruyff football philosophy in Luis Enrique. Second, after leaving Brazilian football for a year, Neymar finally adapted in Europe and made his mark as the third world best. Third, Luis Suarez came in and he found freedom at Barca’s front line. So, Barca are favourites to win the game tonight.
But El Clasico are El Clasico. Madrid will not give in until the final whistle. There’s an honour at stake here. So both team will fight hard. I mean play hard.
Barca have invited eight of their president and former presidents for this match. They will come to honour Johan Cruyff, the man who planted Barca’s famous playing style in La Masia youth system decades ago, who has just died a week ago. The system that gave Messi a chance to grow.
For everything he had achieved, I’d like to call Johan Cruyff the Guardian of Barcelona.