The El Clasico is now a race of the lame and no longer that high-octane fixture we used to see in recent years, as per ex-Madrid chief Valdano.
Once upon a time, the El Clasico was enough to provide enough excitement for the whole week or even the month.
Many times it largely determined who won the La Liga and that occasion was a grand stage for the best footballing talents in the world to show who does it better.
The presence of Cristiano Ronaldo in Real Madrid (at the time) only made this fixture more intense due to his rivalry with Lionel Messi.
However, ex-Madrid chief Valdano believes the El Clasico has lost that appeal and is now a battle between two ‘wounded giants’.
Valdano, a former Real player and head coach, feels that both teams lack the quality they have shown in years past.
“This El Clasico is a race of the lame,” the 64-year-old told Ondacero. “Barca and Madrid are going through hard times. Barcelona’s recovery [in La Liga] is only down to Real Madrid. It’s their bad form that has strengthened Barca’s position.
“There are many people that said after the match [against City] that they won’t come on Sunday to avoid the suffering of a defeat but it is an El Clasico match, all wounds will be cured.”
“There are many experienced players at Real Madrid and they’re playing at home.”
Only three days remain till the El Clasico, the most anticipated match until the end of the La Liga season. Who will come out on top?