Sunday’s El Clasico between Real Madrid and Barcelona is one of the most important in recent years.

Just two points separate the Spanish giants in the two-horse title race with just 13 matches remaining.

A Barca victory would extend their lead to five points and they would take a giant step towards winning La Liga.

But a Real Madrid win would see them leapfrog Quique Setien’s and could give Los Blancos the momentum to win their first title since the 2016–17 season.

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If Zinedine Zidane’s side are to win, they will surely need to keep a very close eye on Lionel Messi – who returned to form last weekend with a four-goal haul against Eibar. But according to goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, they don’t need a special plan to combat the six-time Ballon d’Or winner.

“Messi? For me he’s like any other player,” Courtois said.

“We study him like we would study a player from Celta Vigo or Levante. There is no difference.”

Just after Courtois’ comments emerged, Barcelona tweeted a video on their Twitter account showing every goal Messi has scored against the Real goalkeeper.

Messi has put nine goals past the ‘keeper while nutmegging him on three occasions.


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