In Spain, when Barcelona play Real Madrid, there is more then just three points at stake. And when Barcelona go to the Bernabeu and win, there is a lot of significance attached to it.
That is what they did on the weekend; Phil Ball looks at the history and the implications.
The most startling fact about Saturday’s game was not so much the two wonderful goals scored by Ronaldinho but rather the fact that after the Brazilian’s second and Barça’s third, several sections of the Bernabéu began to applaud him, and by implication, the whole team. Florentino Pérez looked on from the Director’s box in stony silence.
Madrid experts have been speculating all Sunday on this one, but the last living memory that any journalist has of the Madrid supporters applauding the eternal enemy was back in 1983 when Maradona ran Real’s defence dizzy in the clásico of that year. Was this a sign of Madrid’s sporting supporters, or was it just their way of protecting themselves psychologically?
Read the whole thing, as they say.