Real Madrid piled renewed pressure on Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman as David Alaba scored a scintillating goal to help them seal a 2-1 victory in the Clasico at Camp Nou on Sunday.
Alaba’s bending shot had Madrid in front for the majority of an end-to-end contest, with Lucas Vazquez making it two in injury-time before Sergio Aguero tapped in his first goal for Barcelona with seconds left.
The result means Barca have now lost a fourth consecutive Clasico for the first time since 1965 and stay a lowly eighth in La Liga, five points behind Madrid, who surged back to the top of the table.
If there was a strange feeling in the Catalan air ahead of kick-off in the first Clasico of the La Liga season, it was probably because this was the first match between these two archrivals not featuring either Lionel Messi or Sergio Ramos since 2004.
All of which may have explained the lacklustre first half an hour, the standout moment being Sergino Dest’s horror miss after seemingly being laid a goal on his plate after good work down the left by Memphis Depay.
However, it was Madrid that struck first blood. Ancelotti’s side broke quickly and intelligently before Rodrygo teed up David Alaba to score in the 32nd minute – a genuinely stunning strike from the left side.
Madrid got their second through Lucas Vazquez in the 94th minute, seemingly putting the final nail in Barcelona’s coffin.
Sergio Aguero then clapped back in the 97th, however, to score his first goal for Barcelona, but it was to prove only a consolation.