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Asensio looked set to give Real Madrid the lead in the 83rd minute, but after a VAR grab the goal fell through. The international turned out to be narrowly offside. Less than ten minutes later, Franck Kessié gave the Catalans victory in the clash between the eternal rivals.
“We didn’t win because of an offside case that we still have doubts about,” Ancelotti told Spanish media afterwards. “During the World Cup it was very clear to see whether something was offside. Now I have doubts.”
FC Barcelona coach was surprised when he was confronted with Ancelotti’s words. “We don’t need to discuss this, do we? It was offside, there is scientific evidence.”
Ancelotti and Xavi also disagreed on who deserved to win. “We played well and a win would have been ours,” said the Italian. Xavi thought that Real Madrid was the lesser of the two. “This win is deserved. We had more chances and were in control of the game. They certainly gave us problems, but overall we were better than Real Madrid.”
With twelve rounds to go, FC Barcelona cherishes a lead of no less than twelve points over Real Madrid, a gap that has never been closed in La Liga in the past. According to Ancelotti, the meager results at the beginning of this year now hurt even more. “We can only be proud of today’s game.”
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Rivals will face each other again next month
Real Madrid therefore seems to have to abdicate, while the Catalans are heading for their first national title since 2019. Xavi mainly wanted to talk about the Clásico. “This is one of my best days as coach of FC Barcelona. When Kessié scored, I got goosebumps.”
The two rivals will face each other again on April 5. Then FC Barcelona defends a 1-0 lead in Camp Nou in the semi-final of the Copa del Rey tournament.
De top vijf in La Liga:
- 1. FC Barcelona 26-68 (+40)
- 2. Real Madrid 26-56 (+30)
- 3. Atlético Madrid 26-51 (+23)
- 4. Real Sociedad 26-48 (+11)
- 5. Real Betis 26-45 (+8)