The past and future of El Clasico is on display in Sunday’s Barcelona v Real Madrid fixture

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Sunday afternoon sees Spanish football’s two biggest teams do battle once again, as Real Madrid visit Camp Nou for an epic Clasico meeting against Barcelona.

The hosts go into the game with two consecutive wins in the past seven days against Valencia in La Liga and Dynamo Kyiv in the Champions League.

That’s lifted the enveloping gloom at the club, given that their on-field struggles have mirrored those off of the pitch.

Joan Laporta and his board are fighting to keep the club’s heads above water in a financial sense, with Ronald Koeman doing his best to ensure Barca are competitive despite the loss of Lionel Messi, the top scorer in the history of this fixture.

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Though the Dutchman has been under fire for long periods of his tenure in the hot-seat, one area where he has excelled is in bringing through young players. One of those, Gavi, becomes the youngest Clasico starter in the modern era.

At 17 years and 80 days, he is at the opposite end of his career to Luka Modric. Real Madrid’s Croatian, at 36 years and 45 days, is the oldest Clasico starter of 21st century.

Will youth triumph over experience, or will Koeman, according to Sport, become the first Barca manager in 85 years to lose three consecutive Clasicos?

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