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29th November
written by Dame Suzy

Is it the Catalan entrepreneurial spirit that also permeates its football? Or the success of its youth program which produces top-notch players many of which the Barcelona squad gobbles up when they’re barely out of diapers? Is it that a lower center of gravity via short players gives Barça a true competitive advantage? Or is it that Real Madrid has put all of its eggs in one basket via Cristiano Ronaldo? Before the game started, I believed Real Madrid would win because they have done far better than Barcelona in recent Champions League games. The slaughter really was a surprise. Of course, I didn’t understand why Raúl Albiol, such a big factor in the defense so far this season, wasn’t on the field. And I was unaware that Gonzalo Higuaín had failed a recent fitness test. Would their participation have made a difference? Did Casillas rely too much on what he thought should have been offsides calls? Let’s just say that Real Madrid, having been defeated by Barcelona and sometimes soundly, in their five latest confrontations, better learn something or face the facts that they will always be runner-up.

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