Football

El Classico: Barcelona & Real Madrid combined best XI

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El Classico is undoubtedly one of the biggest fixtures in the footballing world, with some of the great players of our generation facing off in a game watched by millions.

As is so often the case when these two meet, there will be much more than bragging rights up for offer when they clash tonight.

Real Madrid currently sit four points ahead of their fierce rivals in the La Liga table, and a home victory at the Bernabeu will surely put an end to Barcelona's title chances.

Both teams will be full of star names, but what we want to know is who would make the cut if these two great teams had to combine to form one team.

Here's how we'd line up:

GK - Iker Casillas

The Real Madrid stopper has been left out in the cold in league games by boss Carlo Ancelotti but we've picked him ahead of teammate Diego Lopez and Barcelona number one Victor Valdes.

You don't play for your country, and a country as good as Spain, over 150 times without being something special.

RB - Dani Alves

Brazil defender Alves was an easy pick at right-back having made the position his own since his move to Barcelona in 2008.

He might not be the best defender in the world, but his marauding runs down the right earn him his place ahead of Real Madrid duo Alvaro Arbeloa and Dani Carvajal.

CB - Raphael Varane

It's often said that defenders get better with age as they gain experience of the game we all love, if that's true Raphael Varane could be one of the greatest defenders of all time.

Not yet 21, Varane is a regular for Real Madrid and France and the idea of him getting even better than he already is must send shivers down the spines of strikers worldwide.

CB - Sergio Ramos

He may be erratic at times, but at his best Sergio Ramos is a world class defender.

He's quick, he's strong and he forms a fantastic partnership with Raphael Varane, meaning we've given him the nod over compatriot Gerard Pique.

Just keep him away from penalties...

LB - Jordi Alba

Some players crumble under the pressure of a major tournament, while some really come of age. Jordi Alba certainly belongs in the second category.

An exception Euro 2012 campaign earned him a move to Barcelona and his consistent performances ever since sees him beat Marcelo to the left back spot in our side.

DM - Xavi

Xavi will be remembered as one of the best players to come out of Barcelona's famous La Masia youth system.

Touch, vision and perfect passing, Xavi has everything needed to play this role and would surely walk into any team in world football, even at the age of 34.

DM - Xabi Alonso

Partnering Xavi in front of our back four is Real Madrid anchorman Xabi Alonso. Despite possessing a perfectly maintained side-parting and beard combo, Alonso is actually one of the less glamorous players in this side.

He may not get the headlines but he's an integral part of any team he plays for and we wouldn't think of leaving him out.

RW - Gareth Bale

How can the world's most expensive player not make the team?

Bale has taken time to adapt to the differing demands of La Liga but he's beginning to find the form that convinced Real Madrid to part with a world record fee for his signature.

The Welshman causes chaos for any defence and will provide plenty of goals from out wide.

CAM - Andres Iniesta

Week in, week out Andres Iniesta can be found playing defence splitting passes that no-one else in the stadium has even seen.

Drifting around in the gap between midfield and attack, drawing defenders out of position, his movement creates space for his teammates to move into before he inevitably slips them through on goal.

LW - Cristiano Ronaldo

The ultimate attacker.

Pace, power, accurate finishing, aerial ability, well-timed runs, strength on the ball and the intelligence to bring others into play - Ronaldo has it all.

The reigning Ballon d'Or winner walks, or sprints, into any team in the world.

CF - Lionel Messi

He may not be a traditional out and out striker, but boy can he score goals.

Like Ronaldo, there's not a team in the world that wouldn't benefit from having Messi in their starting eleven and he was always going to be in ours.

The thought of seeing him spearheading our team is simply mouthwatering.

Think you could pick a better team? Think we've left someone out? Leave your comments below.

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Topics:
La Liga
Real Madrid
Football
Barcelona

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