The latest El Clasico proved to be another reminder of why the fixture is so named. Even though Barcelona took the lead in the second half, Real Madrid triumphed 2-1 at the Camp Nou.
The drama just didn’t stop at the Camp Nou as Real Madrid took on bitter rivals Barcelona in their bi-annual La Liga showdown. After a goalless first half, very uncharacteristic of the high profile encounter, Barcelona’s Gerard Pique snatched the lead with a header in the 56th minute.
Seven minutes later, Karim Benzema’s acrobatic volley leveled things up between the two Spanish giants. Gareth Bale had seemingly put Real Madrid in the front seat with a fine header in the 82nd minute, but had his goal disallowed after the referee made a very controversial decision in Barcelona’s favour.
“I can’t believe it was disallowed,” Bale said after the game, according to the Guardian.
“[The referee] said to me that I pushed him. I didn’t even touch the guy. I was just a bit taller. I made sure I got over the top, I made sure I didn’t touch him because I know what the Spanish referees are like. It was a very bad decision in my eyes.”
However, the decision didn’t prove to be a damning one. Cristiano Ronaldo scored a late winner for Real Madrid to ensure they avenged their loss to Barcelona earlier in the season.
Very harsh decision by the referee
The Gareth Bale goal was as legitimate as they come, as he leaped higher than defender Jordi Alba and muscled the ball into the net from a Cristiano Ronaldo cross. Claudio Bravo could do nothing as the ball took a bounce and found it’s way past him. However, just as Bale was wheeling away to celebrate, the referee blew his whistle, indicating that the Welshman had fouled Alba in the build up to the goal.
Subsequent replays showed that there had been minimal contact between the two players. The disallowed goal could have proven very costly for Real, especially considering Sergio Ramos saw red in the dying minutes of the game. However, Ronaldo had a big match impact as he put one Real’s bitter rivals.