El Clasico 2020: Barcelona vs Real Madrid Match Preview, Teams News and Predictions
- Updated: February 12, 2020
When is next El Clasico in 2020?
El Clasico is on the horizon once again as Real Madrid and Barcelona, two of world football’s biggest names, prepare to square up once again in the final half of the La Liga season. The El Clasico 2020 La Liga date has been announced and fans cannot wait for another exciting clash of the titans in a backdrop that has been marred with controversy over the last match and a stalemate with both teams remaining on the same points at the top of the table.
The 2019-20 season has seen Real Madrid in consolidation mode after a major revamp of the lineup and they have signed several players including Eden Hazard, Luka Jovic, Eder Militao and Ferland Mendy among others. The previous season saw the team finishing without a trophy and Los Blancos will definitely be aiming to add to the trophy cabinet once again under Zinedine Zidane’s stewardship. Barcelona, on the other hand, aren’t doing excellently either. They won only the La Liga in the previous season, losing out on the Copa del Rey and Champions League victories. They’ve recently added Antoine Griezmann and Frenkie de Jong to the lineup but haven’t really settled into a rhythm. To compound their woes, Luis Suarez is steadily waning in terms of his abilities and physical strength while Ousmane Dembele is injured and out of the team again.
El Clasico 2020 in La Liga
The El Clasico 2020 date has been fixed for the 1st of March, 2020. The venue will be the Santiago Bernabeu, the home ground for Real Madrid and the match will be commencing at 8 PM UK GMT or 3 PM US ET. The El Clasico 2020 predictions are really hard to make considering the current scenario although several pundits predict another draw at best or a slim victory for either team. The upcoming El Clasico is the second such game between the giants for the current season.
Amidst this fiercely intense backdrop, El Clasico rumors abound about Real Madrid stretching the extra mile to take revenge for the first El Clasico that took place on 18th December, 2019, after being postponed from 26th October, 2019, due to political unrest in the area. The game was a tense affair and ended without a single goal being scored. Real Madrid supporters, however, are still nursing their anger over what they feel was an unfair rule-out of the goal scored by Gareth Bale. There was violence post the game and fans had a showdown with the police as well. Rumors are floating in the air about how Real Madrid supporters will be coming out in full strength for the upcoming El Clasico and may possibly jeer/boo Barcelona’s contingent for what they perceive as a major slip-up in the previous game. In fact, the two teams may go extra hard against each other considering the present scenario from a socio-political level, notwithstanding their chequered rivalry from decades.
Also Read : La Liga Points Table 2020
A closer look into the El Clasico previous results is important since the goal-less draw between both sides kept them both on top in the La Liga table. At the halfway stage of the present season, both Barcelona and Real Madrid occupy pole position with 40 points each from 19 matches. Real Madrid will be looking to go all in for the upcoming El Clasico after playing Osasuna, Celta, Levante and then the big game versus Manchester City before 1st March. Both Real Madrid and Barcelona continue to be leading contenders for the La Liga title even though Sevilla and Atletico Madrid remain just 5 points away from the top two clubs.
Barcelona has won the La Liga in the last couple of seasons by a considerable distance although Real Madrid gave them the slip by only three points when they won the 2016-17 La Liga crown. The race to the finish will be really tight in 2019-20 and it may all depend on which team wins the El Clasico to give them that slender advantage at the top of the table. In that sense, Real Madrid may have an advantage as per some pundits since they will be playing at home.
However, the team’s current record against Barcelona merits a mention. Even while playing at home, Real Madrid has been defeated in 4 out of their last 5 matches versus Barcelona. Barcelona has already introduced a new chapter with the appointment of Quique Setien as the coach in place of Ernesto Valverde. The sporting rivalry aside, Barcelona and Madrid are Spain’s largest cities and identified at times with different political stances. Barcelona is often synonymous with Catalan sentiments while Real Madrid is seen as showcasing Spanish nationalism. This rivalry between the two clubs is one of the biggest in global sport.
Coming to El Clasico stats, Barcelona holds the edge in all competitive games between the two clubs. They have won 96 matches while Real Madrid has won 95 games in all. Barcelona leads in the total matches tally with 115 victories as compared to 99 wins for Real Madrid till December, 2019.
El Clasico 2020- Rumors, Controversies and more
Barcelona are reportedly in talks for snapping up striker Rodrigo from Valencia as per the latest El Clasico rumors. If the deal goes through, this may be a new surprise from Barcelona at the El Clasico as they will look to unleash the talented striker at the Bernabeu. However, the team may have to give up a player in order to land Rodrigo and rumors abound about it being Arturo Vidal though nothing has been confirmed yet.
Another controversy has rocked the Barcelona camp ahead of the El Clasico where iconic defender Gerard Pique has reportedly lashed out at Quique Setien for forcing the team to train even when Storm Gloria was raging. Pique is reported to have stated that they’ve cancelled sessions for less in the past. On the eve of a match that may determine the eventual La Liga winner for the season, the absence of bonhomie in the Barca dressing room may be a sore point. To add to the sentiments, legendary footballer Ronaldo has now revealed that he never wanted to depart from Barcelona.
Ronaldo spent a fabulous season at Barcelona, notching up 47 goals in 49 matches before he signed for a whopping $27 million (then-world record fee) at Inter Milan. Ronaldo has stated that he had signed the renewal for his contract at the closure of the season and left for duties with the Brazilian national team. However, he has now revealed that after 5 days, he was told that the renewal could not continue and the whole thing was not in his hands. Ronaldo has now stated that if the club did not value him properly then it was not in his hands to stay. He spent 5 years at Inter Milan prior to shifting to Real Madrid as part of the fabled Galacticos unleashed by Fiorentino Perez. Real Madrid fans may now claim bragging rights about giving Ronaldo his proper due across several successful seasons at the Bernabeu.
Real Madrid and Barcelona are in for a tense clash, as reported, with Real Madrid fans and players still unhappy about the results of the last El Clasico in December. Real Madrid has highlighted the strong appeals for penalties from Raphael Varane that were turned down in the first half of the game. The first challenge was from Clement Lenglet, the Barca defender and the second one from Ivan Rakitic who reportedly grappled with the Real Madrid defender Varane and then tugged on his shirt when competing for the corner.
Alejandro Jose Hernandez, the referee, allowed play to go on and none of these appeals were checked courtesy VAR. Sergio Ramos has publicly stated that these two were pretty clear penalties. To add insult to injury for the Real Madrid contingent, Gareth Bale had a goal cancelled for an offside after half-time. Now, Barcelona holds the advantage based on goal difference although both teams have the same points at the top of the table. Yet, this controversy could cast a shadow on the upcoming 2020 El Clasico with Ramos, Bale, Varane and the entire team looking to go hard at their Barcelona rivals.
It also remains to be seen whether Barca remain in the right frame of mind with Pique’s public showdown with the coach. There are many players in the team who may end up siding with Gerard Pique in this matter although Lionel Messi could eventually have the last word in persuading them to turn up and play with full commitment for the team and not just the coach.