.

ai???2nd May, 2009 is a day that will live in infamyai??? is probably what Winston Churchill would have said about this particular match. Admittedly, this edition of THTai??i??s rewind doesn’t entirely suit the occasion as the game tonight will be in Camp Nou and the famous 2-6 Clasico was in the Santiago Bernabeu.

The reason we at THT have chosen this particular game is because of the events before and after the game (and the general atmosphere surrounding this match). Barcelona had just got their new manager, Pep Guardiola and this was his first Clasico away from home. In addition, the Catalans had just played a Champions League semifinals against 2008 finalists Chelsea which ended in a 0-0 draw.

An inexperienced manager in charge of one of the biggest clubs in the world had two extremely important games coming up. The first was against eternal rivals Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu, and then a 2nd leg against Chelsea (which Barcelona drew 1-1 and hence qualified for the finals against Manchester United).

It seems history has the chance to repeat itself. Heading into that Clasico three years back, Real Madrid had a new manager as well, Juande Ramos (who had taken over from Bernd Schuster) and had won 52 out of 54 points until that game. This was a must win game for both sides, but it can be argued that the pressure on Pep Guardiola was enormous after losing against Valencia and drawing at home against Chelsea.

As it turned out, fans of the Catalan club were witnessing history in the making. The day belonged to Barcelona despite Real Madrid scoring first via Argentine forward Gonzalo Higuain. Thierry Henry(2), Carles Puyol, Gerard Pique and Lionel Messi(2) scored for the Catalans and allowed Barcelona to leave with all three points.

Another El Clasico beckons, who will come out on top?

___

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