El Derbi Madrileño is now in the heavyweight division of football derbies, one of the most fiercely contested matches in Spain. It boils down to the different cultural stereotypes that are born from the Madrid soil.
Different identities, different fates but equally very good sides. The underlying class differences is why the match means SO much – it’s a battle of pride. So, let’s have a look at some of the classic encounters between the two Madrid sides.
Atlético 1-4 Real (1997)
Everybody knows that Raul Gonzalez was on the books at Atlético as a kid but it really came back to bite them on the backside. Within five years of being released due to cutbacks made to the academy, Raul was putting a dagger in the hearts of Atlético.
The 1996/97 season was an El Clásico battle for the league title and in January, it looked as though the advantage had swung towards the Catalonians when Real went one goal and one man down in the first half.
Fresh-faced Raul stepped up to the plate and buried a second half brace at the Vicente Caldron, and thus Real ran out 4-1 winners and kept their title charge alive. Real won La Liga that season with a whopping 92 points.
Real 4-1 Atlético (2014)
History was already written before a ball had been kicked. Two teams from the same city in the final of the Champions League, they had met before in previous rounds, but never before in a final.
Real had been stuck on nine Champions Leagues for 12 years now, every year that 10th seemed further and further away. Was this the year? Not if Diego Simeone had a say – or the other Diego for that matter as Godin headed Los Rojiblancos in front in the first half and it stayed that way until the death.
Sergio Ramos is no stranger to match-defining moments, so of course it was he who stepped up in the 93rd minute to draw the game level and force extra time. When Bale scored in extra-time, it was like someone had taken a pin to the Atleti defence and deflated them, and Real would run out 4-1 winners.
Real 1-2 Atlético (2013)
When a Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink brace helped Atlético to a derby win in 1999, little did everyone that it would be the last Atleti derby win for the best part of 14 years. When the pair met in the 2013 Copa del Rey final at the Bernabeu, 23 matches had passed since Los Rojiblancos’ last derby win.
Cristiano Ronaldo scored inside 15 minutes. Business as usual…right? Well, not this time.
Diego Simeone had other plans. This Atlético side had won the Europa League the previous season and ripped Chelsea’s limbs off in the UEFA Super Cup. This time, it was going to be different.
Diego Costa levelled just before half time (what is it about Diegos vs. Real Madrid eh?) but no side could find a winner in normal time and thus extra time beckoned. In extra time Miranda would nod home the winner and Ronaldo would be sent off as Atleti recorded the sweetest of victories.
Atlético 2-0 Real (1992)
For most of us, when motivational team talks are the topic of conversation, our minds wander to Istanbul 2005. What did Rafa really say at half-time? But for Atleti fans it’s a little different – Luis Aragonés’ team talk in 1992 is the one that springs to their minds.
The Madrid derby was a more even affair back in 1992, when Barcelona ruled over Spain. Copa del Rey final at at the Bernabeu, perhaps you wouldn’t need motivating. Aragonés wasn’t going to take that chance. Props at the ready.
“See this bottle?” he asked his team. They saw the bottle. So he went on. “We’re going to stick it up their arses!” he screamed. “Right the way up! Forget tactics. It’s Real Madrid at the Bernabéu. They’ve been sticking it up our arses for so long, now it’s our chance to stick it up theirs!”
Credit where it’s due because goals from Bernd Schuster and Paulo Futre secured the win for Atleti.
Atlético 0-3 Real (2016)
This resounding Real win was record breaking in many ways. First of all, it was a key win in Real’s first La Liga title in four years.
Cristiano Ronaldo was, typically, centre of attention when he netted a 39th career hat-trick at the Vicente Caldron – scoring a deflected free-kick, a penalty and a tap-in via a Bale cross. These goals saw him overtake Alfredo di Stefano as the top scorer in the derby with 17 goals.
A bitter pill to swallow for Atleti and Diego Simone as they tasted defeat in the last league Derbi Madrileño at the famous old ground before their move to the Wanda Metropolitano.