You can never have too much of a good thing, at least not where El Clasico is concerned. This evening's showdown between Barcelona and Real Madrid in the Copa Del Rey will be the 15th such tie in 26 months - and what a game it promises to be. Don't believe us? Check out these brilliant facts about the greatest rivalry in club football...
1. There have been 221 Clasicos since the first recorded match between the teams on 13 May 1902.
2. Though outshone by their Catalan counterparts in recent years, Real Madrid have the lion's share of Clasico wins across history, with 88 victories to Barcelona's 86.
3. Despite being among the most decorated clubs in international football, there has never been a European Cup final featuring Barcelona and Real Madrid. It's not going to happen this year either, with the teams scheduled to meet in the quarter finals should they progress past AC Milan and Manchester United respectively.
4. El Clasico is traditionally the second most widely watched domestic tie in football, with only the UEFA Champions League final attracting more television viewers. More than 400m people are estimated to have watched Los Galacticos' title-deciding win at the Nou Camp last April, where 780 media professionals from 31 different countries provided global coverage of the game.
5. Though 21 players have moved from Barcelona to Real Madrid, only 12 have gone in the opposite direction. A total of 13 players have played on both sides of El Clasico during their careers, a list that includes Michael Laudrup, Luis Enrique, Bernd Schuster and Luis Figo, who was welcomed back to Camp Nou in 2002 with a pig's head thrown at him by an enraged Barcelona fan.
6. El Clasico is more than just a game of football. There's a sharp political edge to Barcelona's ongoing battle with Madrid, with each game played in the shadow of Catalonia’s fight for independance. The animosity stems from Real's ties to '30s dictator General Francisco Franco, who was vehemently anti-Catalan, staged a coup of the region, killing the Catalunian president and making it illegal to speak the region's native language. He is even said to have sanctioned the kidnapping of Barcelona players in a bid to help his beloved Galacticos to victory against their fiercest rivals.
7. The game is one of the cultural events of the year in Palestine, surprisingly home to one of the largest mass of Barcelona supporters worldwide, with thousands expected to descend on the region's bars to watch the game. "We can identify with the Catalans and their struggle against the great power of Madrid, like the way we struggle against Israel," one supporter told a BBC reporter last year.
8. The all time top goal scorer in Clasico games is Alfredo Di Stefano with 18 goals. However, a certain Leo Messi is looming just behind Di Stefano's record having scored 17 in 22 Clasico matches, providing ten assists along the way. Can he beat that record with a brace this evening?
9. Cristiano Ronaldo may have scored fewer Clasico goals but has a better record than Messi in the fixture, with 10 goals in 9 games. Last year he became the first player to score in six consecutive Clasicos.
10. There have been 730 goals scored in Clasico fixtures in all competitions. That's an average of 3.3 goals per game. If history has taught us anything, it's to expect goals tonight. Lots of them.
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