It will be a starry clash on Wednesday when Barcelona will host Real Madrid in the first leg of the Copa del Rey semifinal. It is the second El Clasico of the season and the first of three in the following month. Although the game may not be the same with Cristiano Ronaldo who is now destroying teams in Italy with Juventus, there is no rivalry in Europe that matches these two enemies set off in Spain.
Twenty-two of the best players on the planet will be at the center of the stage for three games in the next three weeks and they will change – all of which you can broadcast via fuboTV (Free Trial). In honor of one of the best football rivalries on the planet, we classify the 22 possible starters for Wednesday's match.
22. Clement Lenglet, Barcelona: A young defender who is in his first season with the club and needs to be more used to being with such a big team. He has potential but is definitely the weakest defender on the field.
21. Sergi Roberto, Barcelona: Another young guy, one who is solid but will not really amaze you. He has made some great moments in the past, even if the decisive one against PSG in what has been the most epic comeback in the Champions League history on two legs.
20. Lucas Vazquez, Real Madrid: Lucas has represented Spain and is an excellent player, but he is far from the level expected of a Real Madrid striker. He has only four goals this season in 30 appearances.
19. Arthur, Barcelona: The former man of the Gremio is in his first season with Barca and has yet to score, but is creative on the ball, knows how to get the ball in space and has the star written on him.
18. Gerard Pique, Barcelona: A good defender who knows how to use his size. He has certainly lost a step at the age of 32, but he is still fit and can contribute to the set-piece attack.
17. Dani Carvajal, Real Madrid: A stone on the back for this team, it is certainly one of the best full backs of Europe. It can go on but where it shines is to defend, especially one against one. Not afraid to go strong on any player.
16. Ivan Rakitic, Barcelona: Rakitic has long been underestimated, but comes from time to time. Of course, he can contribute almost nothing in defense, but he can eliminate one at any time and has a good connection with his teammates in the field. There are only much better players.
15. Toni Kroos, Real Madrid: The German can do everything. He's an elegant passer-by, he can shoot at home during the game run or from set-pieces and he has been a fantastic signature since he arrived from Bayern Munich in 2014.
14. Casemiro, Real Madrid: Casemiro is a player you might not like, but he does so many things so well. His ability to read the passages, force the players in one way and advance the ball to start the counter is super impressive. He is only eclipsed playing in a midfield where he is not the star.
13. Keylor Navas, Real Madrid: Not a bad reserve goalkeeper, right? Only a Champions League legend who won three consecutive finals with the club. The Costa Rican is still one of the best in the world and can play in the cup because that's how it's usually done for the national cups.
12. Gareth Bale, Real Madrid: When he's not hurt, he's a top 10-15 player in the world. So why twelfth in this game? Well, he collects an injury every year that slows down his production. In the league, he has five goals in 17 games, but he is in 11 this season. It is flashy as we have seen in the Champions League final, but it does not remain enough on the field.
11. Jordi Alba, Barcelona: Still underestimated, Alba comes forward with ease, defends well even if it is smaller when it comes to size, and is always on the same page with the attackers. A great player who has been one of the best in the last five years.
10. Raphael Varane, Real Madrid: If you wanted to build the perfect defender when it comes to size and skill, it's Varane. He is a machine that can do absolutely everything but sometimes he will make an expensive mistake. The World Cup winner is only 25 years old and in the next few years will probably be considered the best striker of the game when he enters the scene.
9. Karim Benzema, Real Madrid: A man forgotten sometimes due to problems and fights over the field, Benzema is currently in the middle of a fantastic campaign in which he has 18 goals, six more than last season. And it does so in different ways: inside the box, outside the box. Benz is back with six goals in the last four games.
8. Sergio Busquets, Barcelona: The number 1 in the list of the most entertaining players to watch, Busquets will not make you want to come back anymore. Sometimes, it's like he's playing in slow motion, but his ability to use his body to protect players and make the right moves to play the ball at the open man is what makes him a world-class talent. You have to fully understand the sport in order to appreciate it.
7. Philippe Coutinho, Barcelona: More than the potential more than anything else, the jury is still out on Coutinho since his transfer from Liverpool. He has 18 goals in 54 games and has produced some absolutely magical attacks from outside the box. It has just been inconsistent and perhaps lacking in trust.
6. Marc-Andre Ter Stegen, Barcelona: Normally, he would not even play Cup games. But the injury to Jasper Cillessen sees the start of the Barca probably playing in this. This is a real boost because it is one of the best in the world. Cillessen would have been ranked between 15-20 on this list.
5. Marcelo, Real Madrid: He is the best left-back in the last decade. Nearly 500 games played, there is nothing I can not do. He has a Brazilian touch, resistance like a man of iron. It can deal damage in the last third and is lethal to a defensive minded player.
4. Sergio Ramos, Real Madrid: Ramos would be the third on the list if he was not afraid of receiving a red card every time he is in the field. In his career, he has 24 red cards. But the most significant statistic of his career is not at the end defensive. He is a central defender who has 105 goals in his career. One of the best ever.
3. Luis Suarez, Barcelona: The Uruguayan striker is still an elite top scorer. It has an average of 35.5 goals per season over the last six years. This season he is leading for 30 points this season and has scored nine goals in 12 games with Barca against Real. A nightmare to face, especially for Los Blancos.
2. Luka Modric, Real Madrid: The best player of the 2018 World Cup and the winner of the Golden Ball. Both are usually reserved for Messi and Ronaldo. The Croatian veteran had an incredible 2018 and is still the heart and soul of that Real Madrid midfielder, but he does not have enough credit for his quality because of his position.
1. Lionel Messi, Barcelona: The best player in the world in the last ten years, beyond. Lionel Messi holds the record for most of the network in the history of El Clasico with 26 points and holds a difference of eight goals between him and second place on that list. He was again and again able to punish Real in various ways. Twenty-six goals in 39 games are incredible, and Messi seems to live for those moments.