Pitchside

Why the next ‘Clasico’ could be the biggest football match ever

Pitchside

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Big transfer window activity so far means the 2014/15 La Liga season is set to be one of the most anticipated in history.

Well… when we say the Liga season, we of course mean El Clasico.

As it stands, barring injuries and suspensions the first meeting of the season between Barcelona and Real Madrid will pit Luis Suarez, Lionel Messi and Neymar against Cristiano Ronaldo, James Rodriguez and Gareth Bale.

That’s just 3-on-3 of the 11 vs 11 set-up that’ll kick the game off. The actual population of the pitch that day. Here’s a preview of how the Clasico games might look like this coming season, using Eurosport’s Best 11 app:

Barcelona's possible starting XI:

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Real Madrid possible starting XI:

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And that’s WITHOUT any additional signings the two juggernauts may make before then.

It’s safe to say Barca v Real in 2014/15 may be the biggest football match in history. At the very least, it’s a cert to be the most talked-about.

The World Cup final shattered social media records on Sunday July 13. Early forecasts suggest a combination of Messi, Suarez, Ronaldo and co will set the bar even higher on Facebook and Twitter.

[MORE ON WORLD CUP'S SOCIAL MEDIA TRAILBLAZING]

And it's safe to say that global mainstream interest will be at an all-time high, too. Funnily enough, the success of the World Cup remaining fresh in many casual fans' minds will help El Clasico break some of the records Brazil 2014 set.

Eurosport Spain’s Patrik Hernandez says this upcoming Clasico series will surpass all of those before it.

“There has been no season before with such classy players in both teams,” he explained. “Not even in the ‘Galacticos’ Era or with Maradona at Barcelona.”

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Of course, the biggest irony of this possibility is that neither are the Spanish champions.

Atletico Madrid will defend the title in 2014/15, having stunned both giants into silence in a superb campaign for Diego Simeone’s men which almost also saw them win the Champions League at the expense of rivals Real’s ‘La Decima’, a 10th title for Europe’s most decorated side.

If anything, being upstaged by Atleti has helped provoke both Barca and Real to splashing more cash and making mouths water across the footballing community.

This time, it’ll take an even finer moment from Simeone and his troops to deny two of Spain’s most star-studded squads, ever.

[KROOS: REAL MADRID THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE]

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[JAMES RODRIGUEZ 'DOES A RONALDO' AT UNVEILING]

[RAKITIC: JOINING BARCA 'LIKE GETTING MARRIED']

Clasico dates (subject to change):

October 26

March 22


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