Spain’s big two continued their bitter and increasingly theatrical feud. The occasion was the Spanish Supercup second leg, and for the record, Barcelona defeated Real Madrid 3-2, though the game is likely to be remembered less for the result and more for the brawl that marred the closing moments.
Last night’s game marked Cesc Fabregas’ debut for his new club, and the midfielder, who came on as a second half substitute, is unlikely to forget the match in a hurry. He was involved in the build-up to Lionel Messi’s winner, but it was as the victim of a brutal challenge by Real defender, Marcelo, that was his most significant contribution to the night’s entertainment.
The foul sparked the by-now obligatory El Clasico brawl involving players, coaching staff and anyone else who happened to be in the vicinity. Real coach Jose Mourinho played his pantomime villain role to perfection: striding through the melee before slyly poking Barcelona assistant coach Tito Vilanova in the eye.
Andres Iniesta put Barca ahead with a deft finish from an exceptional Messi through ball before Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 100th goal in a Real Madrid shirt to equalise.
Messi, though, was the key player as he scored at the end of the first half and again three minutes from the end with French striker Karim Benzema finding the back of the net in between.
Messi's heroics ensured Fabregas made a dream start to his Nou Camp career and sealed Barcelona's first silverware of the season with a 5-4 aggregate victory over Los Blancos.
Are the El Clasico brawls ruining the footballing spectacle? Is this the first of many Final wins for Barcelona this season? Have your say and join the conversations with the SoccerBible community online, on Twitter and on Facebook.