Sergio Ramos will become the player with the most Clasico appearances in history when he takes to the pitch at the Camp Nou on Wednesday night.
The Real Madrid captain will play the 43rd Clasico of his career, surpassing the current record of 42 that he shares with the likes of Manuel Sanchis, Paco Gento, and Xavi Hernandez.
This will be the second major appearance record Ramos has broken in the space of a few months after overtaking Iker Casillas as Spain’s record appearance maker in October.
Ramos’ first Clasico came in November of 2005 in a match that saw Ronaldinho rip Real Madrid apart, drawing applause from the home crowd at the stadium Santiago Bernabeu.
The defender’s overall Clasico record is 13 wins, nine draws and 20 defeats in 42 games so far.
In those 13 wins, four have come in cup finals – the 2011 and 2014 Copa del Rey finals and the 2012 and 2018 Super Copa de Espana.
As all his goals against Barcelona have been, Ramos’ first goal against the Catalan club was a header, coming at the Camp Nou in the 2006/07 season when a young Lionel Messi scored a hat-trick in a 3-3 draw.
Although his commitment is unquestionable, Ramos’ discipline hasn’t always been there in El Clasico.
He received 18 yellow cards and five red cards against Barcelona in his career.
Ramos has worn the armband for 11 Clasicos so far, while his counterpart on Wednesday is also a star in the fixture.
Messi has played 41 Clasicos in his career so far, winning 19, drawing 10 and losing 12.
Real Madrid is his fourth-favourite opponents too, as the Argentine has scored 26 times against Los Blancos, with only Sevilla, Atletico Madrid, and Valencia conceding more often to him.