El Clasico Copa Style: First Leg Liveblog

Words can’t describe the anticipation.

Starting XI: Pinto Alves Pique Puyol Abidal Xavi Busquets Iniesta Fabregas Messi Sanchez

Bench: Valdes, Mascherano, Adriano, Dos Santos, Thiago, Sergi, Cuenca

Storm Trooper XI: Casillas, Altintop, Ramos, CarvalhoMarcelo, Coentrao, Pepe, Alonso, Diarra, Ozil, Callejon, Higuain, Ronaldo, Benzema


Boarding begins 15 minutes before the 4:00 PM EST flight. Don’t be late.

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  1. kinukinu
    January 18, 2012

    Calvin are you drunk already? How is Callejon in your lineup?

    • Calvin
      January 18, 2012

      FCB official site shows Callejon. Let me look around here for a second

  2. blitzen
    January 18, 2012

    Words can’t describe the anticipation.

    Is AAAAAGGGGHHHHHHH not a word, then?

  3. footballfan
    January 18, 2012

    From what I read their lineup is:

    Real Madrid starting XI: Casillas, Altintop, Carvalho, Sergio Ramos, Coentrao; Pepe, Xabi Alonso, Lass; Benzema, Higuaín, CR.

    Maybe a 4-4-2 with Ramos-Carvalho-Pepe-Coentrao; Altintop-Lass-Xabi-Ronaldo; Higuain-Benzema.

    It’s a weird lineup.

  4. January 18, 2012

    Who is on the EE bench tonight? Mou has picked quite the odd lineup. Altintop and Carvalho in the back, Coentrao joins them. Both Benz and Higuain on too.

    • Calvin
      January 18, 2012

      Adan, Kaka, Ozil, Granero, Marcelo, Albiol, Callejon

    • blitzen
      January 18, 2012

      Granero is on the bench. That’s just cruel of Mourinho. Not like he would ever consider actually playing him.

  5. Calvin
    January 18, 2012

    Well, I think I finally got their lineup right.

  6. Chiu
    January 18, 2012

    Carvalho play? So pepe could be play in midfield. Rough match it seems

  7. January 18, 2012

    Okay cules. Time to log off the interwebs and avoid all human contact until I can get home and watch the game.

    Enjoy the game all. Visca Barca!

  8. jakep22
    January 18, 2012

    Streams please anyone??!!!! Mine cut out!

  9. Blau-Grenade
    January 18, 2012

    Wow, what a game!!! Saved by Puyol and Abidal. No words.

  10. jordi™
    January 18, 2012

    Gem from the guardian “Is Pepe the player Mourinho might have been?”

  11. Chiu
    January 18, 2012

    Yuhuuu..we win, another coming from behind. Will comment later

    Pepe was such a bastard,stepping on messi hand intentionally. I hope he extinct from football. Very unsportsman

    • Jim
      January 18, 2012

      So happy but just have to say I thought Abidal had a great match.

  12. Gogah
    January 18, 2012

    Another win at the Bernabeu, our favourite hunting ground.

    iniesta should have scored from that nice assist from alexis in the first half though. and someone please poison pepe’s food or something.

  13. Nav
    January 18, 2012

    Huge win. And from behind. So happy.

  14. DumbOx
    January 18, 2012

    I had the same sense of calm when EE first scored on us during the December Clasico. I never for a single second doubted this team. I’m so proud of this team and proud to support them. I’m wearing my lucky Barca shirt underneath my suit — it never fails! Visca Barca!

    • G6O
      January 18, 2012

      Same with me – I wasn’t worried at all before the game and when they scored and I wasn’t worried at all either and just waited for us to turn it around 🙂

    • BarcaRoja
      January 19, 2012

      I actually felt the same thing, in fact, in a weird kind of way (sorry), i was kind of hoping that they would score first to wake us up and unleash the hunger to attack and score, like it was just a matter of time before we have complete control of the match. Hopefully next leg would give us an even more positive result!

  15. Nik
    January 18, 2012

    Great, great win. I was lurking in the liveblog and was surprised to see the worry after we went down a goal. I thought outside of CR7’s goal, we looked totally in control. I wish Iniesta had put away the chances he had in the first half. I’ll be worried when we enter a clasico without him.

    I’m pretty sure Pepe can commit murder on the pitch and still get away without being red carded. It’s unbelievable how he manages to escape expulsion time and time again.

    Was it me, or did the team seem very composed and comfortable playing out of the base 4 at the back (moreso than in previous matches where they operated with 3 at the back)?

    • G6O
      January 18, 2012

      I don’t think we have been so dominant in the Classico since the manita. They scored first, yes, but that was their only time they created any sort of danger in the whole first half and had we been better at converting our chances, it would have been 1-2 or 1-3 at the half. In all the other games in 2011 they caused us a lot more trouble.

  16. Jafri
    January 18, 2012

    Okay they’re showing the highlights and that stamp on Messi’s foot by Pepe keeps coming on. SO disgusting. How can he get away with this kind of stuff? It’s pathetic that there’s no accountability for it just because the referee missed it. Why don’t they go back to the matches and penalize/fine/ban this kind of behaviour?? How can he be allowed to walk away after it?! He’ll could start bringing a tire iron to the matches to bust some kneecaps and get away with it.

    So pissed off about that. Such complete and utter BS.

  17. camiseta
    January 18, 2012

    Roller coaster , ups and downs ,it’s really toying with my heart.Coming from behind one more time oh boy…thanks Puyi and Abi for saving the day :).
    I really liked Busquets , Pique and Alexis -the only one from our striking force that didn’t take the day off!-.I’m glad that our defenders step up tonight. I’m off to see the morning , have a good day everyone. Visca Barca :).

  18. Oil_Can
    January 18, 2012

    Captain Tarzan barcelona take matters into his own hands, not for the team but of course he didn’t want his record to be ruined 😀

    What a finish from Abidal! Mr.Copa_del_rey himself

  19. blitzen
    January 18, 2012

    Glad to see we won. I was envisioning Barça goals all the way home, but I must say neither Puyol nor Abidal featured in my visions! 😆

    Now time for a relaxing beer & then I look for a good download.

    Visca Barça, Visca Catalunya, i Visca Pep!!!!!

  20. January 18, 2012

    I was calm and confident even when Pinto gifted them the customary GK’s present for being such good hosts, but what really made me sure of the win were Sadster’s comments. Seemed to rub off on Puyol and Abi..

    PS – Seems my SELLSOPA handle brought good luck.

    3 points


  21. Srini
    January 18, 2012

    Great win. But very disgusted with the violence that EE continues to perpetrate on the pitch.

    This is getting worser and worser and no one seems to want to question Mourinho’s role in it. Barca is continuing to take the high ground expecting officials to do their job, but this is going too far. The lax punishment to Mourinho for his utterly disgusting eyepoke on Villanova has set the tone.


    How cool it is to see Rooney come to twitter to offer his thoughts on Pepe – “Pepe. What an idiot. Sometimes people wind u up.”, “Haha. That goal serves pepe right.”!


    And so it is . 9 games against Mourinho’s Evilest Empire. 5 Wins (3 in the heart of Mordor), 3 draws and a loss. FC Barcelona continues its hegemony over the White Thugs of Madrid.


    All said, while 2-1 is a good score to take to Fortress Nou, there is no reason to stay complacent. Barca has to play to win and squeeze out all from the short squad yet again. How I wish, there is some decent reinforcement in the forward line during the winter transfer window.


    Visca Barca!

  22. January 18, 2012

    …a non-soccer fan watched the second half with me: “what’s wrong with the white team? Can they do that??” My thoughts exactly. EE looked “owned” but respectable in the first half, but the second half descended into the morass of a few Classicos back.

    I would’ve been perfectly content with a 1-2 victory, but after the antics of Pepe and co I wish it had been 1-4…oh well there’s always the return leg!

    Meringues: we call you EE for fun…you don’t have to live up to it!

  23. simple_barcafan
    January 18, 2012

    Mourinho: ‘If someone criticizes Cristiano Ronaldo, he has a problem with me’

    If someone doesn’t criticize Pepe, he has a problem with everyone…

  24. IamXavi6
    January 18, 2012


    EE – Was hoping you guys turned a corner but you were as bad as ever…truely, surely even the most die-hard Madrid fan must be now over-concerned over Mou and his instructions and just falling back into Farcical ways…

    I’m happy to get my prediction wrong, as I was SURE law of averages and probablity means we were due to drop this one…but hey, happy to be proven wrong!

    And Pinto, no matter what, I still like you in the team for all the good morale you bring AND Pep the balls you have to start Pinto 🙂

    Have a good day ya’ll.

    • Helge
      January 18, 2012

      lol, I had to look up what ‘limpio’ means. But that has to be a f*in joke.
      Or have all the Portuguese players lost their mind?

      Back in 2000 or so, under Figo & Co, I even liked the Portuguese national team. But for the upcoming WC I just that they get humiliated by Germany and NL. I think there’s no other country, from my point of view, that contains more ‘dirty’ or ill-minded players (aka arch rivals of mine) than Portugal.

      • Sam M
        January 18, 2012

        I’m not sure about Carvalho’s humor though his irony is pretty good as Pepe’s play is as ‘limpio’ as a 12-hour old diaper:

        And yes, I hope Germany and the Netherlands send Carvalho, Pepe, Coentrão, and co. packing in the first round this summer. I couldn’t agree more with your loathing for the Portuguese national team.

  25. Jafri
    January 18, 2012

    Some stats from the official Barca site:

    Attempts: Barcelona 11 (5 on target + 2 to post), Real Madrid 5 (2)
    Fouls: Barca 13, RM 20
    Possession: 68% – 32%

  26. just listenin
    January 18, 2012

    Is anyone else ready to say, enough already with the violence crap? I feel like everyone always says, let’s take the high road, let the refs do their job… Guess what? Dosn’t work, and they aren’t doing their job. We are soooo lucky we’ve escaped without serious injury, but that clock is ticking. Should’ve been a pair of red cards today. Really fed up with their lack of class and plain pure thuggery – poor sport thug cry babies. Period.

    Great victory, cheers Puyi and King Eric.

    • IamXavi6
      January 18, 2012

      Yeh, as I said a few posts back, thought we turned a corner with the classicos but obv not

    • BarcaGirl_Indo
      January 18, 2012

      they were disgusting all this time, with their thuggery and all..
      BUT it was overshadowed by Alves, Pedro, and Busquets antics back then..
      people saw us as the ‘bad guy’ because of the diving and racist accusation..

      now all the antics are on them. the diving, the acting, the thuggery. all is complete.

  27. Helge
    January 18, 2012

    I have to bow down to the greatness of this team. Simply AWEsome!

    Puyol with another thundering header, there’s so much power and willingness in him, he’s one of a kind.
    Iniesta’s first touch was ridiculous, absolutely inhuman. That IS NOT possible.

    Pepe… wow. I’m speechless. At least Mou didn’t defend him but criticized the stomp from Pepe on Messi’s hand.
    Nonetheless he is a true psycho and doesn’t belong on any football pitch. He’s a shame for the history and reputation of Real Madrid.

  28. IamXavi6
    January 18, 2012

    Also loving the Abidal-Alves pistol dance celebration thing

  29. BarcaGirl_Indo
    January 18, 2012

    I guess Real Madrid just wanted to prove (again) that BarcelonaFootballBlog bloggers are right all this time by calling them Evil Empire.

    Poking eye? Check.
    Kicking legs? Check.
    Shoving face? Check.
    Grabbing hair? Check.
    Stomping foot? Check.
    Stomping hand? Check.

    • January 18, 2012

      Obscene Gestures? Check (Check out Pepe’s celebration when they scored in the Final)

      Conspiracy Theories? Check

      In Denial? Check (‘Pepe always plays clean’)

    • Chiu
      January 18, 2012

      discredititing rival? Check

      pushing head? check (coentrao pretending to help each other to get up, then pushing down messi head)

  30. K_legit in Oz
    January 18, 2012

    Game 3 seen with the melbourne penya (sorta)
    Any melbourne livers on this blog?

  31. January 18, 2012

    Oh and I know the players have made for a pretty happy birthday for Pep. Hope he extends his contract soon..

  32. January 18, 2012

    Exceedingly proud of this team. Brilliant performance. The score line doesn’t even reflect how lopsided the match was.

    RM was just gifted that first goal by Pinto’s awful keeping.

    Otherwise Barca was in complete mastery of a match at the Bernabeu. This game was even more dominating than the last Clasico at the Bernabeu.

    Mourinho’s tactics were also completely regressive. He took his team backwards. The lost progress they had made – at his doing.

    And it’s so unfortunate after a positive match last time, that the disgusting violence has returned. Embarrassing performance all around by Madrid.

    • IamXavi6
      January 18, 2012


      Also wonder just how Messi and others really could shake their hand at the end of games like this. I’m all for not stooping to other peoples levels but it surely must be hard to do –

      Having said that, always rise above other peoples mediocrity!

  33. Helge
    January 18, 2012

    Wayne Rooney on twitter:

    Pepe, what an idiot. Sometimes people wind up.

    Haha. That goal serves Pepe right.

    We have humiliated him and his team twice in the finals of the most important and prestigious competition in club football, nonetheless he was in the end clearly on our side. Well done, Pepe… 🙂

  34. January 18, 2012

    The great paradox is that Mourinho is incredibly overrated as a tactican. The media circus he creates adds as additional motivation for the team. All this benefits Barca. The problem is, the tactics he does employ is very dangerous to our players.

    • Momo
      January 18, 2012

      Agreed, there is no doubt his players are following clear instructions to harm.

      I doubt he had to instruct Pepe though. I never thought I could loathe a footballer this much…

  35. Momo
    January 18, 2012

    A thundering trademark Puyol header and MOTHEREFFIN Abidal scoring in a dominant display at the Bernabau, what more can you ask for?

    Other than that the game was absolutely terrible in terms of what it could be considering its the two best footballing sides in the world.

    One man can take most of the credit for that… Pepe…
    I stand by the opinion I had of him when I saw him rake his studs into that player’s back some years ago, and it’s that he should never be near a football pitch due to the fact that he is absolutely mental. An absolute disgrace to the game no matter what team you support.

    • BarcaGirl_Indo
      January 18, 2012

      last El Clasico in December we could enjoy discussing football, just football, but now… *sigh* it’s just embarassing

  36. Momo
    January 18, 2012

    If anyone has the Iker faces for this match (gif or not) please share…

  37. Helge
    January 18, 2012

    I didn’t hear it on my low-quality stream, but I just read that there were more than a few monkey chants after Abidal scored the 2-1.
    This match is getting more and more disgusting 🙁

  38. jordi™
    January 18, 2012

    I like how Messi didnt wear his new white and gold shoes at the Bernabeu. Red and blue like a boss 8)

    • nzm
      January 18, 2012

      He posted them on his Facebook page today, with the message that the white and gold was not to be worn today! ;D

    • Nik
      January 18, 2012

      I know others have said his header reminded them of the Germany-Spain match from the WC, but for me, his header reminded me of the header he scored in the 2-6 Clasico back in 09. I was half expecting him to take the captain’s armband off and give it a kiss again in front of the Bernabeu lol.

      How will we ever replace this lion of a man?

  39. January 18, 2012

    Funny thing about today’s game was how utterly average Messi was. I don’t recall him being more uninvolved in a Clasico basically ever.

    • nzm
      January 18, 2012

      Wait until next week.

      Pep is playing this as 2 halves again – just like he did with the Spanish Supacopa.

  40. andrecito
    January 18, 2012

    awesome pic kari…that really is all that has to be said…a win at the bernabeau always makes my day (or really, week)! and i am lucky, i live in japan, so i was watching at 6am.. i get to enjoy the full day afterwards with my “victorious over ee” grin…

    im so proud of our guys…i have so much confidence in them..you know, in my entire life of watching sports…whenever i am watching “my team” play (whatever the sport maybe), and the other team takes the lead..there is always part of me that immediately feels a desperate sense of despair…the feeling of an impending loss looming in the near future…but not with this barca team! i can never doubt them…

    with such a good feeling, i hate to be negative..but i have to say that i really detest watching pepe play..i only watch ee play when they are playing us..so i don’t know how he acts in other games (except for the occasional highlight clip of something he did that makes me think “wow, did he really do that??”…i just can’t understand how any ee fan/ staff member can stand to watch him play, let alone support him after he pulls off one of his psychotic stunts…

  41. ooga aga
    January 18, 2012

    in the real world, what pepe does is assault, and you can go to jail, never mind a yellow or red “card”

    i agree — ban him. set an example for children for crying out loud.

    and to think the madrid fans in the pub today (Seattle) were chuckling at his behavior. what sadness

    • ooga aga
      January 18, 2012

      here are more example of his behavior:


  42. andrecito
    January 18, 2012

    wow..its been a while since i watched that..obviously that kind of behavior is never warranted…but i always wondered what set him off to react in that way…regardless, i really do wonder how any ee fan likes him…aside from his atheticism, i would think his negative characteristics far outweigh the positives..

    • blitzen
      January 18, 2012

      I don’t want to offend anyone, but I honestly think Pepe is a bit…mentally defective. Chemically unbalanced, maybe. I can;t think of any other explanation for his personality.

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