This coming Saturday, the Catalans take on Spanish giants Atletico de Madrid. Out of the two teams, Atletico are currently on better form. Having gone unbeaten in La Liga thus far, “Los Colchoneros” will look to extend their run of victories, as Koeman’ biggest test will prove vital to his reputation. The match is therefore scheduled to take place at the Wanda Metropolitan Stadium at 9pm CET; with an exciting match up to be expected. In this article however, we will be looking at something different. We shall be focusing on “classical” past encounters encouters between Barcelona and Atletico, rather than the most recent ones that we are used to.
Atletico Madrid 2-5 Barcelona. 13/4/1997
Ronaldo, despite only being at Barcelona for one season, impressed in this match. He stole the headlines as throughout the game he played with such finesse, confidence and skill. Managing to score a hattrick, Ronaldo made headway all over Spain the next day.
The match itself was typical of an open, end-to-end game that these sides regularly contested during this time period. There was action, pace and intensity coming from both sides of the pitch. Current Atletico coach Diego Simeone was sent off for an ugly challenge on Luis Figo, as the Catalans managed to score 5 past the Spanish Keeper. Three of them, were from the legendary Ronaldo, who thereby secured his top goal scoring record in La Liga.
Atletico Madrid 5-2 Barcelona. 10/5/1998
The year after however, Atletico de Madrid returned the favour. At this point however, Barcelona were already La Liga champions under Louis Van Gaal, so the pressure to compete was not there.
People remember this game for Rivaldo’s iconic goal. Looking up from midfield, Rivaldo saw that the Atleti keeper Molina was out of his line. Consequently, Rivaldo managed a successful chip from the halfway line, and recorded one of his best goals in his career. Because of this genius by Rivaldo, despite Barcelona losing by 5 goals to 2, it once again stole the headlines. None of Atletico’s goals were quite as memorable, despite taking home the 3 points.
Atletico de Madrid 4-3 Barcelona. 1/3/2009
Atletico came into this game with poor form. Barcelona on the other hand, were completely dominant the whole season, and were on course to win yet another La Liga title. This result therefore came as a shock to many, as Barcelona entered the game as clear favourites.
This game proceeded as follows: Barcelona started the match in great form. They went two nil up through stunning goals by both Thierry Henry and Lionel Messi, and were looking very controlling throughout the early stages. While Barcelona were seemingly dominant however, Atletico then replied with two goals themselves. A long-rate shot coming from Diego Forlan, as well as a powerful strike from Sergio Aguero knocked the Catalans back. Henry then proceeded to restore Barca’s lead, only for late goals coming from both Forlan (from the penalty spot) and Aguero to give Atletico the victory.