- Classic Tension in the box and Ancelotti's "doubts" about VAR: "The game was won"
- Barcelona takes the league against a frustrated Real Madrid in a final of drama and ecstasy
On October 16, on a day that now appears to be thousands of light years away, goals from Benzema, Valverde and Rodrygo in the Clasico against Barcelona propelled Real Madrid to the lone lead of La Liga. Chamartín enjoyed a team that was extraordinarily superior to its eternal rival, superior in football, in physicality and in sensations, throwing itself three points above the box of Xavi Hernández on his way to repeat title. At that time, the Barça were already struggling to stay alive in Europe and doubts about the health of the project were more than evident. "Xavi stay!" shouted the Bernabéu. From that date to this March 21, many things have changed.
Now, five months after the first classic of the season, Madrid continues to look at Barça with the height that gives it to be in the quarterfinals of the Champions League while its rival has been eliminated from the Europa League, but with the concern and anger of having let the League, the Spanish Super Cup and, who knows, escape. the Copa del Rey. In five months, Carlo Ancelotti's team has gone from +3 after the October classic to -12 with which he left the Camp Nou on Sunday. 15 points lost in just 17 days that have offered the title on a plate to Barça.
Barça, 46 out of 51 points
Those of Xavi, inferior in Europe but solid in the league championship, where they have settled to the 1-0 and 0-1, have only left 5 points of the 51 that have been played since then: the defeat in Almeria (1-0) and the draw against Espanyol at home (1-1). The rest, victories to secure 46 of 51 possible points. They have won at Mestalla (0-1), at the Metropolitano (0-1), at Villamarín (1-2), at La Cerámica de Villarreal (0-1) and at San Mamés (0-1) to secure the lead. Stadiums that give Leagues.
Meanwhile, Madrid, capable of making history at Anfield Road by thrashing Liverpool 2-5, has left points indescribably. The mini-crisis before Qatar (draw against Girona and defeat in Vallecas), gave way to a return of the World Cup that dynamited any opportunity to fight for the championship: defeat in La Cerámica (2-1) and Mallorca (1-0) and draws against Real, Atlético and Betis to reach the classic with a disadvantage of nine points.
The headline is that the classic has decided the League, but Madrid moved away from the trophy in matches and trips that Barça was able to survive. The whites, irregular, have only managed 31 of 51 points since that Madrid-Barça in October. A statistical drama that leaves them without League.
Waiting for continental success, the reasons for the domestic debacle accumulate in Valdebebas in the middle of the national team break, without another match to calm the wounds and improve the sensations. The backbone of the squad, except for Benzema and Kroos, will go with the national teams while the technical staff tries to correct mistakes and plan a final stretch of the season that needs a title to conquer the approved. Ancelotti knows it and the club knows it.
The "doubt" of VAR
After the classic, the Italian focused his press conference on his disappointment with the VAR and the "doubt" for the offside whistled to Asensio. Some "doubts" that are also chewed in the club, where they do not understand some revisions (and not revisions) that have been made and not done in some games, such as the penalty not whistled from Kessie to Fran Pérez in Barça-Valencia, the hand of Alaba in Villarreal, the penalty not whistled to Benzema against Betis or the aggression of Gavi to Ceballos in the last minutes of the classic. And, as Ancelotti claimed, they consider that the offside of the World Cup, where lines were not thrown according to television frames, worked better. Despite the arbitral anger, they also assume their own mistakes.
Benzema's discomfort throughout the course has prevented him from physically reaching 100% in March, a vital moment for Madrid, and the team, without a nine substitute guarantees, notices it, always dependent on a Vinicius who can not be the beginning and end of all the plays. The injuries of Mendy and Tchouaméni, capitals in the final stretch of last season, have not helped either. A situation that has squeezed the physique of Kroos and Modric, who noticed at the Camp Nou the more than 80 minutes played on Wednesday against Liverpool.
According to The Trust Project criteria
- Vinicius Junior
- Aurélien Tchouaméni
- Luka Modric
- Rodrygo Goes
- Xavi Hernandez
- Real Madrid
- FC Barcelona