While some prefer to let their football do the talking, others simply mouth off about their opponents, leading to some quite spectacular quotes. The latest of these came from Jordi Alba, who claimed that Raphael Varane said: “Rat boy, you don’t even have a driver’s license” to him during a match.
This got us thinking: what are the best insults El Clasico has produced over the years? Here are another six classics…
When you’re in your first season as a Real Madrid player, it’s a bold move to take aim at one of Barcelona’s biggest players. To take on two on the same day is almost unheard of.
Reguilon was playing just his second Clasico – and only his 18th Real Madrid game in total – when he hit Luis Suarez with the underused insult of “rabbit”, but that wasn’t enough.
Why stop at Suarez when Lionel Messi is available too? The right-back started on the biggest dog there is, and wasn’t in any mood to back down.
Messi has generally given as good as he’s got in these games, be it on the pitch or in the slanging matches with his rivals.
Pantomime villain Sergio Ramos was on the receiving end of some foul language in 2017, after winding up Messi by looping the ball over the Argentine’s head.
“La concha de tu madre” was the main takeaway phrase. We won’t repeat the translation here, and if you speak Spanish you’ll know why.
Mourinho and Guardiola will likely butt heads for as long as they’re both in the game, but one of Mourinho’s most memorable tirades came in the aftermath of a Clasico.
“Guardiola is a fantastic coach, but I have won two Champions Leagues,” Mourinho said after his Real Madrid side lost to Guardiola’s Barcelona in the 2010-11 edition of the competition.
“He has won [only] one Champions League and that is one that would embarrass me. I would be ashamed to have won it with the scandal of Stamford Bridge and if he wins it this year it will be with the scandal of the Bernabeu.
“I hope one day Guardiola has the chance of winning a proper Champions League, a brilliant, clean championship with no scandal.”
It’s always the ones you least suspect. Arbeloa always seemed like the quiet type during his time in England, but that hasn’t always been true of the right-back.
Arbeloa’s beef with Pique goes back to 2013, when the latter’s response to a contentious Real Madrid penalty was to liken Los Blancos’ game against Elche to a comedy movie. Arbeloa responded in kind, but it didn’t end there.
“A player who has started once in 32 games doesn’t deserve a response. I’ll tell my friends to tell me when I’m not a protagonist, either on the pitch or off it,” Pique would later tweet in response to some more chat from his Spanish international team-mate. Cutting.
Yup, it’s Mourinho again, doing what he does best – acknowledging his own successes and selectively ignoring those occasions where he didn’t get things right.
“Messi scored 50 goals that have not been worth anything,” Mourinho said in 2012 after his Real Madrid side beat Barca to the title, using the comment as his justification for why Messi did not deserve to win the Ballon d’Or.
We wonder if Messi was spurred on by that as he helped his club to the title in 2012-13, scoring ‘only’ 46 times, and leaving Mourinho out of a job at the end of the campaign.
Eto’o never really made it at Real Madrid, joining the club as a teenager but only making seven senior appearances for the club.
So, when he won La Liga with rivals Barcelona in 2005, it meant that bit more to him. So much so that he hurled himself into the celebrations and chanted “Madrid, bastards, hail the champions.:
He apologised soon after, saying “I never wanted to show any lack of respect to anyone.” That’s a strange way to go about it, mind you.