Barcelona vs Real Madrid: who has most wins in El Clásico?
Real Madrid host Barcelona on Sunday in the second Clásico of the season, Madrid having won the first in dramatic fashion at Camp Nou.
Real Madrid go into the 248th Clásico top of the Liga table and on a four-game winning streak against Barcelona and with the all-time head-to-head upper hand over their arch rivals. Barcelona are currently 15 points adrift of their eternal rivals but Xavi has improved the Catalans' lot considerably since he took over from Ronald Koeman and will be looking for a statement victory at the Bernabéu on Sunday, buoyed by an unbeaten run now 11 games long and with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Pedri and Ferran Torres all firing.
Real Madrid lead Clásico standing
Madrid’s 2-1 win in their most recent meeting, at the Camp Nou earlier this season, was Los Blancos' 100th triumph in official Clásico competition (which does or not include a 1903 Copa de la Coronación game, depending on who you ask), and took Carlo Ancelotti's side to four wins ahead of Barça's 96 in the historical rivalry.
Barça had led 96-95 after a 1-0 triumph at the Bernabéu in March 2019 - the first time since 1931 that they had boasted more Clásico victories than Los Blancos (excluding the disputed 1903 match). However, a 0-0 draw at the Camp Nou later that year has been followed by four straight victories for Real Madrid, who will become the first of the two clubs to register an undisputed century of wins in the fixture if they are victorious on Sunday.
There have also been 52 draws in El Clásico.
Another fine Messi
For Barça, it will be the second Clásico since the departure of superstar forward Lionel Messi, whose 26 career goals against Real Madrid make him the fixture’s all-time highest scorer.
Barça have more or less recovered from the shock of losing one of the greatest players of all time and Xavi made some astute moves in the January window, but it must still be odd for culers to contemplate a game against Madrid without their talisman of the past decade and a half.
Barcelona looking to address Madrid's recent run
Barcelona must have thought they had at least managed to avoid defeat when the sides met at Camp Nou in October, Sergio Agüero scoring on his Clásico debut to cancel out David Alaba's opener, the Austrian defender also become a Clásico debutant goalscorer. Lucas Vázquez had other ideas though and pounced in the 97th minute to seal victory for Ancelotti on his own return to the fixture.
Xavi knows a thing or two about El Clásico of course, the Barcelona manager having played in 42 during his career. That is a figure only bettered by Messi and Sergio Ramos (45), although Sergio Busquets will move to 43 Clásico appearances if he features on Sunday. Assuming they are fit and selected, Gerard Piqué will make his 40th appearance in the Bernabéu and Benzema his 39th.
Overall, Madrid have won the last four Liga Clásicos, scoring nine times during that run to Barcelona's three.