Barcelona vs Real Madrid, El Clasico LIVE stream: Copa del Rey commentary, channel, lineups, score prediction

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Barcelona vs Real Madrid LIVE
Copa Del Rey 2018-19, semi-final first leg
El Clasico

Venue: Camp Nou

Kick-off: 8pm GMT, tonight

Barcelona and Real Madrid face off at Camp Nou in the first leg of the Copa del Rey semi-finals tonight.

Aiming to lift the trophy for the fifth season in succession, the hosts, having already seen off Cultural Leonesa and Levante, produced an epic comeback against Sevilla to book their place in the last four.

Real Madrid, who currently sit third and eight points behind Barcelona in LaLiga, have not won the competition since 2014.

Los Blancos saw off Melilla and Leganes before a comfortable two-legged defeat of Girona to set up a Clasico clash in the Copa del Rey semis.

Follow El Clasico LIVE with Ben Hayward at Camp Nou!

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Score prediction: Barcelona 2-1 Real Madrid

Real Madrid’s crushing 5-1 loss on their last visit to the Camp Nou was a fifth in six matches and curtailed the dismal, shortlived reign of Julen Lopetegui after just four and a half months.

However, they have won each of their last four matches across all competitions under Santiago Solari and will be desperate to give a better account of themselves this time around.

Barcelona should be aiming to keep their treble hopes alive and kicking and may settle for taking a narrow first-leg lead to the Santiago Bernabeu for the return fixture which takes place on February 27 – three days before the two teams go head-to-head again in the league at the same venue.


Barcelona vs Real Madrid team news and predicted line-ups

Barca

Ernesto Valverde will make a late decision on Lionel Messi, but Ousmane Dembele misses out.

Messi has been named in the squad after training on Tuesday, having received treatment for a thigh problem in Saturday’s 2-2 with Valencia and LaLiga and subsequently missed Monday’s session.

It remains to be seen whether the Argentine attacker will start or feature as a substitute in the Clasico, but Dembele will not be involved after failing to make the squad as he recovers from an ankle injury. The French winger should be back for the trip to Athletic Club in La Liga on Sunday.

If Messi is left on the bench, Valverde could opt for youngster Carles Alena in a wide role, with winger Malcom another alternative.

Goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen, who usually starts for Barca in the Copa del Rey and was a hero as he saved a penalty in last Wednesday’s 6-1 win over Sevilla, is out with a calf problem.

That means Marc-Andre ter Stegen will feature in goal for Ernesto Valverde’s side, with 19-year-old Inaki Pena called up as his reserve.

Barcelona 4-3-3: Ter Stegen; Sergi Roberto, Pique, Lenglet, Alba; Busquets, Arthur, Rakitic; Messi (or Alena), Suarez, Coutinho

Real Madrid

Santiago Solari has a strong squad at his disposal with only defender Jesus Vallejo out through injury.

Gareth Bale made his first start since returning from injury as Los Blancos beat Alaves 3-0 at the Santiago Bernabeu on Sunday, but the Welsh winger may have to settle for a place on the bench for the trip to Camp Nou.

Vinicius Junior is in line to play from the outset in what will be his first Clasico, having been cut from the matchday squad by former coach Julen Lopetegui in October’s 5-1 defeat at Camp Nou.

Lucas Vazquez, rested on Saturday, looks likely to feature on the other side, although Solari could also opt for Bale. Meanwhile, Toni Kroos should start in midfield after he sat out on Saturday.

Right-back Dani Carvajal, suspended at the weekend in La Liga, will return in place of Alvaro Odriozola, with Solari set to keep faith in youngster Sergio Reguilon over out-of-favour Marcelo on the left.

Keylor Navas, who has lost his place to Thibaut Courtois in La Liga and the Champions League, is first choice in the Copa del Rey this season and will start at Camp Nou.

Real Madrid 4-3-3: Navas; Carvajal, Ramos, Varane, Reguilon; Casemiro, Kroos, Modric; Vazquez, Benzema, Vinicius


TV channel and live stream online coverage

UK based fans have been unable to watch the previous rounds of the competition, but streaming service Eleven Sports have acquired the rights to broadcast this, and the rest of the remaining Copa del Rey matches – including the second leg on February 27, and both matches between Real Betis and Valencia, the other semi-final.

Matches can be viewed either on an app (Android or iOS) or via the Eleven Sports website, www.elevensports.uk, although fans will need to sync their telephones, tablets or computers to a television in order to watch games on TV.

Eleven Sports will also be showing the Spanish giants’ league clash on March 2, which means it is offering three El Clasicos at £5.99 a month now, with that price dropping to £4.99 on March 1.

Click here for more information.

You can also follow all the action on our LIVE blog with our Spanish correspondent Ben Hayward at Camp Nou.


Head to head record and history (h2h)

Barcelona and Real Madrid have played each other on 272 previous occasions across all competitions, with Barcelona leading the way with 113 victories compared to Real’s 99. There have been 60 draws.



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