9 La Liga Games You Should Re-Watch While Football Is Cancelled

Marginal VAR offsides, shockingly one-sided PSG matches, José Mourinho… all is forgiven.

You really never know what you’ve got until it’s gone, and European football is no exception, with fixtures cancelled for the foreseeable future as the coronavirus continues to impact public gatherings across the world.?

At times like these, it’s time for the internet to step up like Cristiano Ronaldo when a last-minute penalty needs converting in a Champions League tie, and thankfully they’ve smashed it into the top corner with the almost endless selection of football highlights online.

Without further ado, here’s a small selection of essential viewing for La Liga fans during football’s unexpected hiatus.

Deportivo 5-2 Real Madrid (1999/2000)

Probably the least surprising fixture on this list, it will be forever remembered for Djalminha treating the Real Madrid defence with utter disdain, almost setting up a goal with an outrageous Lambretta ?as Depor stomped past their rivals on their way to their first and only title.

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A strong Real side featuring Roberto Carlos, Raúl and Guti was no match for the trickery of Djalminha in midfield as he carved them open time and time again on the break, while Roy Makaay can also be seen among the goals.

If watching seven whole goals seems a bit much for you, do yourself a favour and watch Djalminha’s 17th minute strike and Fernando Hierro’s late consolation, both treats for fans of well-taken set pieces.

Real Madrid 3-1 Mallorca (2006/2007)

In these trying times,? it’s easy to feel nostalgic for football’s capacity to provide a neck-and-neck title battle where everything is to play for going into the final few weeks of the season, and it doesn’t get much closer than La Liga’s 2006/07 campaign.

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In ‘La Liga de las Remontadas’ (The League of Comebacks), Madrid overcame a six-point deficit to beat Barcelona by virtue of a superior head-to-head record, and they saved the greatest comeback of them all for a 3-1 final-day victory over Mallorca where they didn’t get their noses in front until the 80th minute.

Barcelona 5-2 Sevilla (1993/1994)

Continuing with comebacks as a theme, how about Barcelona’s own ‘remontada’ against Sevilla in 1994? 

The Catalan club needed to better Deportivo’s result to ensure an unlikely title, a prospect which looked distant when they were 2-1 down at half-time.?

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Hristo Stoichkov and Romário, whose touch for Barcelona’s third is a thing of beauty, teamed up to turn things around, but with Barcelona 5-2 up, there was more drama as Deportivo got a last-minute penalty at Valencia. With defender Miroslav ?uki? missing from the spot as Bebeto bottled his duties, Barcelona’s 14th league title was one of the most dramatic in Spanish history.

Barcelona 1-1 Atlético Madrid (2013/14)

Remarkably?, neither Barcelona or Real Madrid came out on top in a title decider, with ?Atlético getting the draw they needed to be crowned kings of Spain back in 2014.?

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In an emotionally taut match (Diego Costa even cries!) where chances are few and far between, Diego Godín held his nerve to equalise for Atleti after a well-taken opener from Alexis Sánchez.

Reflex saves, refereeing controversy and questionable finishing follow as a euphoric Atleti drag themselves across the line by the barest of margins.

Barcelona 5-0 Real Madrid (2010/2011)

Picking a Barcelona match to feature during their modern heyday under Pep Guardiola ?is no mean feat, but they blew away their nemeses in this game in what might be regarded as the ultimate vindication of tiki-taka.

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There’s so much to enjoy here, between Xavi’s improvisation for the opener, a petulant stand-off between Guardiola and Ronaldo, and what was probably the best moment of Jeffrén Suárez’s life, with Lionel Messi inevitably pulling the strings throughout.

Real Madrid 5-0 Barcelona (1994/1995)

Real Madrid fans, you can keep reading now, as we invite you to cast your mind back to when Los Merengues, having suffered defeat at the hands of Johan Cruyff’s Barcelona by the same margin the previous season, tasted the sweetest possible vengeance.

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Madrid bullied the Barcelona defence in the first half as the imperious Iván Zamorano put on a finishing clinic, with Michael Laudrup at the heart of proceedings, and future Barcelona manager Luis Enrique even joining in the fun.

With Deportivo the bridesmaids in second place yet again, Madrid were well on their way to a 26th title.

Espanyol 1-0 Valencia (1970/1971)

What’s that? You’re already sick of dramatic last-day finishes? Well how about one which featured THREE SEPARATE TEAMS? going into the final round of fixtures?

This was the case in 1971 when Atlético, and more amusingly Barcelona, found themselves in the position of having to support Espanyol in order to stop Valencia from coming out on top, while hoping that one of them could beat the other on the final day. Espanyol did their bit, but both Atleti and Barca fell short, with a fortunate Valencia able to end a decade-long Madrid duopoly.

Barcelona 3-4 Real Betis

Our most recent match is an absolute stunner, with Barcelona’s first home loss in two years cementing the reputation of Quique Setién’s Betis as unmissable television.

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Amid the free-flowing attacking football, there is some genuinely unforgivable defending to enjoy from both sides, and it works as a perfect illustration of ?Barcelona as an occasionally sparkling but largely dysfunctional contemporary side.

Cádiz 2-3 Real Madrid (1983/1984)

There was considerably less high drama in ?La Liga in the 1980s, with Madrid dominating the second half of the decade, and one of the main men responsible lit up the footballing world on his debut.

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Emilio Butragueño made his senior debut in 1984, and by 1986, ?Madrid had ended a five-season title drought, with the legendary Spanish striker wasting no time in establishing himself alongside the likes of Hugo Sánchez and Jorge Valdano.

His debut shows you exactly how he was able to integrate so quickly, coming on with Madrid 2-0 down at the break, blasting in the opener, and then giving them the win with a poacher’s finish.


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