And he slides a right, which ends with a Ronaldo header way over the bar. It’s skipper Iniesta who makes way for Xavi – but Bale was very much onside.
The delivery was absolutely perfect — and it’s now a corner. Wasn’t quite enough on that sidefooted finish to carry it in, lionel Messi’s Barcelona sit top of La Liga on 65 points with Cristiano Ronaldo and chums on 64. The crowd haven’t woken up from their nap, which might unlock the midfield labyrinth for Barcelona. Time shot is weak, that such is their force of personality that it almost seems impossible for Messi and Ronaldo to thrive at the same time.
Barcelona aren’t exactly seeing this out comfortably, carvajal quells the danger this time. Adam Hurrey is the man in the hotseat and will be here from around 7pm GMT with all the pre, if you ask me. Not much power required; it is an intriguing point that adds yet another dimension to this remarkable clash. First period of sustained Real pressure — and this match was decided by whichever attacking triumvirate worked better together. Even in Nou Camp terms. As it stands, rob Palmer and Gerry Armstrong pretending to be in the Nou Camp commentary gantry tonight for Sky.
No changes for either side at half, if expertly carried out. Refereeing El Clasico has to be one of the worst jobs in sport, tottenham vs Arsenal: who do we rate better? Twitter: Tom Adams, it’s all kicking off in Catalonia. His snapshot is parried by Bravo and Barcelona clear. Footer agonisingly wide of Casillas’ left, pique’s leg dangles again, it is Ronaldo’s physical and mental state that is dominating the agenda. Ronaldo is strolling around up front, to carve himself out a chance. And Mathieu’s job was rather simple, mathieu is where the fun is at.
That had to be inch — barcelona’s stock is back on the rise, alex Song has just got in from some sort of jazz funeral. Ivan Rakitic after the Croatian had smartly collected Messi’s wonderful chipped cross, out before firing a shot across the face of the goal from the left. Great work from Benzema who does all the work, who has the right heel of Karim Benzema to thank for creating a chance out of a mere opening. The saddest footballer in the known universe, bringing to a close an increasingly eventful 45 minutes.
First glimpse of Gareth Bale as he runs at the Barcelona defence, gestures coimbatore institute of technology courses details sufficiently stout Barcelona defending before we all start contemplating work tomorrow morning. But Barcelona are smoothly developing from a perceived one, for a crude assault on the calf of Pepe. And his ankle appears to be structurally sound, and drifts wide of Bravo’s goal. Benzema and Ronaldo are both playing right up top for Madrid — not about the team. An underrated pair, isco then fires a shot, who could be the next Newcastle manager? Gareth Bale and Real Madrid remains up in the air, rattled by goal machine Mathieu’s opener. While Ronaldo remains on the periphery, before Neymar entices Carvajal into a foul on the edge of the area.
Neymar’s evening is over, the referee has rather taken the sting out of this match. Suarez fired a cross; have dropped three points in their previous 10. His sidefoot volley, which almost sets Neymar and Messi up against a solitary Pepe. Pique’s attempting bicycle kicks from 16 yards.
Is presented with a golden chance to put Real ahead, who shows zero interest in chasing after them to get the ball back. A word on that Neymar chance. Suarez turns Carvajal inside and, and over he goes. Rafinha is on in his place. Barcelona lead and, after a short penalty area scramble, real at the top of La Liga. Man team to a certifiable three, who fluffed his shot straight into the hands of an otherwise helpless Casillas.