Competition Focus

‘It’s the best match in the whole world’

Why is it that a soccer exhibition between two teams located 4,000 miles from Dallas has caused so much excitement among local fans?

Carlo Ancelotti has the answer.

“There are no friendly matches between these two teams,” the Real Madrid coach said at a recent news conference in which he talked about Saturday’s game against FC Barcelona at Arlington’s AT&T Stadium.

“Everyone knows that they are spectacular matches, we like to play them and always try to win,” said Ancelotti, who is in his second spell with Real Madrid.

In his first stay (2013-15) with the Merengue team, the Italian coach, 64, won the Champions League and the Club World Cup.

Ancelotti returned to Real Madrid in 2021 and has since won the Champions League and the Spanish League.

According to the Spanish League, El Clasico remains one of the most followed soccer matches in the world.

The game is broadcast to more than 170 countries, and its audience levels exceed 600 million worldwide viewers. Only the World Cup final has a larger viewership audience.

The game pits two teams that have dominated the world scene by recruiting great players and alternately winning the local league and prestigious international club tournaments.

Real Madrid leads in head-to-head results in competitive matches with 102 wins to Barcelona’s 100 and 52 draws.

Barcelona leads in exhibitions with 23 victories to Madrid’s six and 12 draws.

In total matches, Real Madrid has 123 wins to Barcelona’s 108 and 64 draws as of the match played on April 5, 2023.

Saturday’s game is part of the Soccer Champions Tour, and although it’s just a pre-season game, Ancelotti said it will be an intense battle.

“A big rivalry has always existed between these two teams that never want to lose. It will be a difficult game, but we hope it will be a great show for the fans,” Ancelotti said.

U.S. presence

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – JUNE 15: Sergino Dest #2 of USA battles with Jesus Gallardo #23 of Mexico in the first half during the 2023 CONCACAF Nations League semifinals at Allegiant Stadium on June 15, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Louis Grasse/Getty Images)(Louis Grasse / Getty Images)

Barcelona brings in its ranks Sergiño Dest, the right back of the United States National Team.

The player, born in the Netherlands 22 years ago, arrived in Barcelona in 2020 from Ajax.

Dest became the first player from the United States to play for Barcelona. In October of that year, he became the first American to play in El Clásico.

“Barcelona is the team I want to be in, I want to stay here for many years,” said Dest, who was loaned out to AC Milan last year because Barcelona coach Xavi Hernández did not take him into consideration for the season.

“This is a second chance for me, it’s up to me to show that I have the quality of belonging to this team,” Dest said at a press conference.

Dest is aware that the game against Real Madrid has caused great excitement among fans in North Texas.

“The magic of El Clásico is that you never know what’s going to happen when these two teams meet,” Dest said.

The anticipation for the game has skyrocketed ticket prices.

According to, tickets start at $242 – at the top of AT&T Stadium – and go up to $942 for a seat near the field.

“No matter where it’s played, the fans will always be entertained,” Dest said. “Playing El Clásico in Dallas is going to be something very special.

“It’s the best match in the whole world.”

To view subscription options for The News and SportsDay, click here.

Source link

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button