Barcelona downs Real Madrid in thriller

BarcelonaCelebratesAgain (Getty) 

It wasn't a blowout, but any victory against an arch-rival is sweet enough.

Barcelona overcame a missed penalty kick with two late goals to topple Real Madrid on its way to a 2-0 victory in the 'Super Clasico', widening its gap ahead of the reigning La Liga champions to 12 points in the standings.

Iker Casillas saved a Samuel Eto'o penalty kick in the 70th minute, but Barcelona responded with goals from Eto'o and Lionel Messi to break open the scoreless deadlock. Barcelona dominated possession throughout the match but Real Madrid played physical defense and frustrated the league leaders for the first 82 minutes of the match.

What did you think of the game? Can anybody in Spain catch Barcelona? Were you impressed with how well Real Madrid played in Juande Ramos' first La Liga match in charge of Real Madrid? Did Casillas remind you why he's considered the world's best goalkeeper?

Share your thoughts on today's thriller in the comments section below

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16 Responses to Barcelona downs Real Madrid in thriller

  1. Jim says:

    Great victory! Marcelo Claure was at the game.

  2. Jim says:

    Great victory! Marcelo Claure was at the game.

  3. Igor says:

    Yes, there’s a reason he’s called Saint Iker.

  4. Areign says:

    real almost did as well as getafe did.

    they changed the plan a bit. in addition to putting everyone behind the ball at all times, they decided it was imperative to kick messi whenever possible. unfortunately they just didnt have the same sucess as getafe.

  5. Areign says:

    real almost did as well as getafe did.

    they changed the plan a bit. in addition to putting everyone behind the ball at all times, they decided it was imperative to kick messi whenever possible. unfortunately they just didnt have the same sucess as getafe.

  6. nels says:

    i think possession of the ball was somewhere in the neighborhood of >60% towards Barca, so yeah real really feelin those injuries rite now.

    also, eto’o gets pumped when he scores, crazy man.

  7. John says:

    I rather have Tim than close your eyes and dive Casillas.

  8. eric says:

    Fine, fine, Casillas is the best keeper in the world right now. I still would like to see more consistency from him and greater command of the box on crosses to rank him up there with the best I’ve ever seen keepers play. Also, Eto’o put that penalty right in his wheelhouse – you have to put those on the ground or all the way up top!

    Good game, and good for Barca to go through and come out victorious. They have a tendency to tighten up if they don’t get you early, so to keep pressing and get the goal in the last 10 will make them more dangerous in the long run. Henry had one of his best games for Barca, he looks very much at home and the whole squad has such great chemistry right now.

    As for Madrid, Snjieder looked awful and I can’t believe they didn’t bring in Van Der Vaart for him when they had to sub off. The best news for them was that Drenthe played really well despite blowing that 1 v 1 with Valdez, which is critical since he’s got Diarra’s role for the foreseeable future. I thought he was much better than either Guti or Gago. Finally, you have to laugh at their injury crisis, with Cannavaro likely to miss time after crashing into the post trying to keep Messi’s goal out – is that insult to injury, or injury to insult?

  9. GianFranco Panizo says:

    Had Drenthe struck that 1v1 the game would’ve been turned out completely different. That was a poorly taken opportunity. He had more time than that.

    But Barcelona was the better side throughout the entire match and were deserved winners. Barca’s snowball continues to grow.

  10. Dweezy says:

    Barca is best in europe.

    These results are starting to get out of control.

    They average around three and a half goals a game and their opponents average less than one.

    Whoever spoke on the chemistry deserves props. Barca has their beating-my-gunners in Paris beat back in their step.

    Of course no one can catch them in Spain.

    And, unless the Eto/Messi/Henry trio gets majorly damaged, no one is going to catch them in Europe.

  11. Isaac says:

    According to the after game show the possesion was with Barca 72% of the time. Also, yes Iker Casillas is still the best keeper in the world. I cant really blame him for letting those two goals in he had to have been tired and his teams marking and defending wasn’t exactly what you call phenomenal.

  12. dakota says:

    The two goals were soft and Ikar could not really do anything about it. I think Ramos sitting him midweek sent a message that unless the real Saint Ikar comes back there is going to be a shakeup. Dudek played well at midweek to assure that Casillas got the message. The penalty was a great save. But it was his save on a Eto’o shot shortly after and then stopping Xavi’s rebound that was absolutely out of this world. For his credit Valdez was very good when tested.

    Drenthe was decent but he was playing in place of Robben and you have to imagine with the older dutchman in the game Real not only scores on the 1 v 1 but also have a little more offensive punch. Drenthe is good but is very young and you see it. He needs to be stronger on the ball and more assertive. But he has a lot of potential.

    Palanca was a true revelation in the game. He is 20 years old. Has never even sat on the bench with this team, let alone played and he goes out there for almost 60 minutes and looks great. He abused Abidal a couple of times and looks absolutely fearless. Good to see.

    I like what Ramos is doing mixing up the players and giving Metzelder (who with Cannavaro looked very controlled and really kept good shape much of the night) and Javi Garcia a shot. I would have liked to see more of VDV but I think he is having some trouble adjusting and the announcers on La Sexta probably have a good point that Ramos wanted different players out there and VDV and Guti play very similar games.

    Barca is damn good.

  13. Roberto says:

    Sorry but my favorite keeper in the world and one of the all time greatest and most talented is still tim Howard even though he has less titles to back him up. Its pure talent I ms talking about. Van der Saar is another one. The greatest of all time being ubaldo fillol and tim

  14. alex says:

    Sneijder is injured. How could Van der Vaart not be starting this match? He oozes class, and that duo of Sneijder and Van der Vaart dominates for the Dutch national team.

    The one player who irks me on real, always, is Guti. He is such trash. He couldn’t get on the bench for Barca, yet there he is starting for Real…always. I guess he has heart, but he’s trashy.

    Barca is easily the best team in Europe, probably of the past 10 years. Just look at this game, the passing wasn’t as crisp as against Valencia the week before (who is a lot better than Real), but it’s gorgeous to watch all the interplay, players moving in and out of positions.

    I can’t believe Real has won the past two la liga titles. It’s just absurd. Two years ago, capello took a bunch of egos and shaped them into a team. He was unceremoniously let go, and schuster (who is a good coach), just didn’t have the outsize ego to control Real. that team survived one season, but no way would it go longer. Real probably does not finish in the top 4 this season I bet.

    My guess for final standings

    barca
    atletico
    sevilla
    villarreal
    valencia
    real

    I have to admit I am a long time Spurs fan, but I just find la liga so much more interesting. I find these 6 sides much more interesting than the top teams in England. Add to the fact that the average Spanish player is much better than the average english player, and you have a league that is overall much more competitive combined with much more technical ability.

  15. BCC says:

    No way Real finishes out of the top three. Ramos will get them in sync, restore some of the pride that began to slip away under Schuster. More importantly, they have Huntelaar coming over to team up with Higuain and Raul. If he can produce 80% of what they are missing with Ruud out, they will be okay.

    They could have used Robinho yesterday, someone to take on defenders. Drenthe is a decent player, but he is not Robinho.

  16. Martha in Miami says:

    I am suddenly now the HUGEST BARCA FAN EVER!!! says the loyal AFUSIONADO, waiting for her MLS team back in Miami…and I used to love Real before they got Becks and got too many stars in their galaxy…pun intended.