Brilliant video of Barcelona and Real Madrid players emerges ahead of El Clasico

Sergio Ramos & Leo Messi

It is finally time - Barcelona welcome Real Madrid to the Nou Camp on Sunday afternoon for the hotly-anticipated first Clasico of the 2018-19 season.

The hosts are second in La Liga, a point behind Atletico Madrid having played a game less, while Real are down in eighth place following a woeful start under Julen Lopetegui.

For the first time since 2007, there will be no Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo due to the former's fractured arm and the latter's summer move to Juventus.

However, it remains arguably the biggest spectacle in club football and sees the Spanish champions go head-to-head with the Champions League holders.

El Clasico has built up somewhat of a reputation for being a dirty, cheating affair, but there is a brilliant video showing its brighter side and both sets of players in their true light.

How some outsiders view El Clasico

Many people look at Spanish football's showpiece occasion as 90 minutes full of diving, fighting, fouling, abusing officials and other ugly parts of the beautiful game.

Sergio Ramos grabs Carles Puyol's face during a Clasico

Over the years, we've all seen Portuguese defender Pepe embarrassingly try to exaggerate contact in order to get opposition players booked or sent off.

That said, a video from one of last season's Clasico's has emerged and, in the heat of battle, it shows the true respect Barca and Real players have for each other.

Barca v Real: The lighter side of El Clasico

The footage features Gerard Pique, well-known for his dislike of Real Madrid, as well as a genuine embrace between respective captains Sergio Ramos and Leo Messi.

Sergio Ramos shepherds the ball away from Gerard Pique

The often criticised Ramos can also be seen hugging Ivan Rakitic after debating a decision and playing around with international teammate Jordi Alba.

Check out the clip of great sportsmanship below:

Of course, it goes without saying that the Barcelona and Real stars are competitors at the very highest level and will do whatever it takes to win.

However, the notion that they detest each other can fade away with more coverage of moments like the ones above, because a mutual respect clearly exists.

Barcelona and Real Madrid players embrace after a La Liga clash

Following what promises to be an intense encounter, Barca and Madrid will travel to Cultural Leonesa and UD Melilla respectively in Copa del Rey action.

What do YOU make of the video showing the lighter side of El Clasico? Do YOU feel Barca and Real players respect each other deep down? Leave YOUR thoughts in the comments box below!

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