EL CLÁSICO

Barcelona's Gavi becomes youngest starter in Clásico this century

Gavi has set another record after the 17-year-old was named in Barcelona's starting XI for Sunday's Clásico with Real Madrid at Camp Nou.

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Barcelona midfielder Gavi becomes youngest Clasico starter of 21st century

Barcelona youngster Gavi set a first in El Clásico after he featured in Ronald Koeman's starting line-up for Sunday's clash with Real Madrid at Camp Nou. The teenager became the youngest player to star at senior level for Spain ever player this month, impressing in a Nations League semi-final victory over Italy.

Gavi makes Clásico history

At the age of 17 years and 80 days, the midfielder, who was named alongside Sergio Busquets and Frenkie de Jong, is the youngest player to start a Clásico since the turn of the century. 

Ahead of Gavi, Ansu Fati, who has scored twice in LaLiga since returning from a long injury lay-off, was given his second start of the season in Spain's top flight, with Sergiño Dest and Memphis Depay completing Barça's frontline.

Fati, who inherited Lionel Messi's number 10 jersey at Barça, is still the youngest player to appear in a LaLiga Clásico this century, having made his debut in the fixture at the age of 17 years and 48 days in December 2019.

Gerard Piqué lined up alongside Óscar Mingueza and Eric Garcia in a possible three-man defence, with Jordi Alba on the left flank. Sergio Agüero, who made cameo appearances in Barcelona's past two games, was named on the bench again.

Real Madrid went into the game looking for their second consecutive win at Camp Nou in LaLiga for just the third time, and Carlo Ancelotti's side had plenty of Clásico experience in their ranks. Ballon d'Or hopeful Karim Benzema started in attack, with Casemiro, Toni Kroos and Luka Modric in midfield. David Alaba was handed a Clásico debut in defence.

Madrid went into Sunday's game on the back of a 1-0 defeat to Barça's city rivals Espanyol. They have not suffered back-to-back defeats in LaLiga since 2018-19.