El Clasico's goals, as called by Ray Hudson
Barcelona and Real Madrid put on an epic edition of El Clasico on Sunday, with Lionel Messi's strike at the death giving Barcelona a 3-2 win and keeping the club very much alive in La Liga's title race.
A dramatic game meant dramatic goal calls from the beIN Sports duo of Phil Schoen and Ray Hudson, the latter of whom is known for his extraordinary turns of phrase, exclamations and creative analogies while generally sounding like he's lost control of his central nervous system.
During a game as finely poised and tension-filled as Sunday's, he was at his absolute finest. So with that said, here are the goals of El Clasico, as told by Ray Hudson. Naturally, he warmed up as the game went on and the stakes kept building.
"Ter Stegen comes and flapses this for me. And that's the genesis. They don't shift it Barcelona, and Real Madrid compound Messi's misery here. An ugly goal, but it doesn't matter. It can be as ugly as a witch's nose covered in warts. Real Madrid fans don't mind. ... Marcelo again, beautiful control, feeds in a beautiful ball over the top, who's this one to, Cristiano? It's hit by Sergio Ramos, it kisses the upright and it's millimeters away from finding the target, and Casemiro says 'I've got your back' and does the mop-up work. Nobody covering the runner at that back post. They go to sleep, they forget about 'what if?' and he is as free as a bird in the park, but again credit this danger ball from who else, Marcelo. Defining pass of this 28-minute game."
Lionel Messi, 33'
"Brilliant! AHHHHHHHHHHH! Astonishing again! Messi proves that in the footballing labyrinth world that he is the Minotaur. As cool as a bomb disposal expert on the run. This is wonderful set-up play, but how Messi slaloms through the defense is again ultra-special. So many decisions to make for Lionel, but he's like a silicon chip with legs and covered with eyes. Look at this! Absolutely astonishing from the man from Argentina who is cleaner than Neutrogena with his finish. Wonderful control. He tattoos the ball to his feet."
Ivan Rakitic, 77'
"OH! Magisterial strike off the planet charts here! Golazo-azo-azo from the Croatian off of his left foot, which turns into an absolute howitzer! No chance for Keylor Navas. The defenders converge on Messi, it's poked away then he makes this space. Toni Kroos is put on his back like a turtle right there, and then he curls it home with sweet precision. Ivan the Terrible creates magic and he vaporizes the Real Madrid defense with a true Croatian golazo to take the lead. A first-class ticket punched and this one, Keylor tries to reach out but it's as elusive as a moonbeam and takes Barcelona ahead."
James Rodriguez, 85'
"OOOOAHHHHHHHH!!!! Again ... Colombiano brilliance! And a triple shot of Colombian espresso! James arrives like a ghost out of a thick Scottish fog and produces magic. And it's a brilliant ball to find him. This is an ace of a pass from you-know-who. Marcelo, one touch and then he finds it, curls it around, it's a bouncing ball, but the bouncing Colombian comes running in, and with that left foot, which turns into a hypodermic, finds the back of the net past Ter Stegen, who's got no chance. Never count Real Madrid out, they've proven it so many times this year. When they've been down in the last minutes, they roar back."
"AAHHHHHHHHHH! Again! The menacing man arrives and sinks his flaming spear into the hearts of Real Madrid! Astonishing from Messi! Beautiful counterattack! All the pieces falling into place! Messi, born in the crossfire hurricane, and he is jumping jack flash right here! Amazing football! ... Messi! You could drop a tarantula into his shorts and he'll still be cool. Demonic skill from Sergi [Roberto], picks the right pass out of his pocket. Gomes leaves it back, Jordi Alba sells it, Messi catapults it home. And again if he's shown a Rorschach Blot, he'd see goals all day. And decently majestic football in the end to pull this out of the fire."