As long as there have been sport groups, there have been rivalries. Whether or not it is the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox or the Cincinnati Bengals and the Cleveland Browns, the 2 rival groups inevitably end up assembly many times, forming an ongoing heated rivalry that delights fans of the sport. One such rivalry is between Spanish football teams FC Barcelona and Real Madrid.
FC Barcelona (also known as Barça by its fans) and Real Madrid are of the earliest Spanish football teams, both forming within the 1890s. From the beginning, the two groups have been seen as representatives of two rival areas of Spain, the traditional kingdoms of Castile and Catalonia. Each teams were part of La Liga, a Spanish football league and a rivalry that went far past football rapidly took root.
It was during and after the Spanish Civil War that the rivalry took on more political overtones. Dictator Francisco Franco banned all peripheral languages, corresponding to Catalan, the language of Barcelona. Catalonia had long been related to more progressive fashions and political ideas, similar to democracy-which was the diametric opposite of Franco’s dictatorial regime. FC Barcelona suffered as a result of being part of the Catalonian culture. Real Madrid, on the other hand, was seen by many Spaniards (and Catalonians in particular) as the “institution” club. Although Franco appeared to favor Real Madrid, members of each groups suffered below his regime.
The fierce rivalry continued into the Nineteen Fifties when each clubs sought to sign Alfredo Di Stefano to play for them. Real Madrid finally won out and Alfredo Di Stefano went on to lead them to many wins. FC Barcelona and Real Madrid went head-to-head twice on the European Cup within the 1960s, with Real Madrid winning one and FC Barcelona successful the other. The two groups clashed as soon as once more over a player in 2000 when Luis Figo left FC Barcelona and signed with Real Madrid. FC Barcelona and Real Madrid competed towards each other once more within the UEFA Champions League semi-closing in 2002, with Real Madrid getting the win. The Spanish media dubbed the match “The Match of the Century”.
In the mid-2000s, the rivalry ascended to further heights when it acquired its own name, El Clasico. The time period El Clasico was traditionally assigned to any South American football rivalry, but the growth of football within the Americas coupled with these two great groups’ rivalry led to the coining of the term as applied to FC Barcelona and Real Madrid. This was principally a advertising and marketing scheme communicated by way of GolTV, an all-football satellite channel, but the term has been embraced by fans worldwide.
El Clasico shows no signs of slowing. To this very day, the 2 groups inevitably seek one another out on the field to seek out out who’s the perfect staff in Spain. Typically FC Barcelona wins and sometimes Real Madrid wins, however finally football fans worldwide are the ones who win each time these giants meet on the field.
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