In a typical El Clasico fashion, the latest Real Madrid vs Barcelona clash had its fair share of controversies and drama – the debate surrounding Asensio’s offside goal and the heated confrontation between Dani Carvajal and Arnau Tenas following the final whistle to name a few.
The most talked about from the bunch is the drama revolving around a possible rivalry that has been developing between the Golden Boy Gavi and Madrid midfielder Ceballos.
It all started a couple of months ago in the final of Supercopa de España. In the first El Clasico of 2023, Barcelona were going head to head with Real Madrid, competing for the Spanish super cup.
The Catalonians were leading by 2 goals to nil when Dani Ceballos made his appearance from the bench around the hour mark. Minutes later, Gavi’s assist to Pedri put the Blaugrana up by 3 goals.
Being the second-best team throughout the game, Madrid players were visibly growing frustrated. Probably it was the result of frustration, but Ceballos decided to pull Gavi back by his hair when the latter was complaining to the referee about a foul in question.
Ceballos’ act made the teenager boil up with anger. The Barcelona ace reacted by pushing Ceballos, which led to other teammates stepping in to calm things down.
Fast forward to two months later, it was the third time Barcelona were facing Real Madrid in the year 2023, having won both the previous encounters. Being tagged as the “league decider”, this was another highly anticipated clash between the two Spanish giants.
Given the importance of the fixture and the drama surrounding the referee scandal off the pitch, it was expected to be a hostile environment for the players on the pitch.
In a moment during the second half that came off the ball, Dani Ceballos appeared to kick Barça striker Robert Lewandowski.
Barcelona midfielder Pablo Gavi happened to notice the event transpire from meters away and decided to take matters into his own hands.
The teenager, in order to avenge the Barça number 9, barged into Ceballos, taking his compatriot out in the process.
Gavi somehow managed to escape any admonishment as the clash happened to transpire behind the referee’s back.
Ceballos later shared his thoughts regarding the event, as the former Betis man believed Gavi’s foul to be a clear red card.
Fans couldn’t believe Gavi wasn’t booked/sent off for his actions as they expressed their disappointment online.
Fans were quick to remember the first time these two players bust-up during the final of Supercopa de España, as they believe the teenager’s most recent act of violence was his way of getting revenge against Ceballos
Adding fuel to fire were the comments of the Andalusian’s sister. In an interview with Moviestar+, Dani Ceballos’ sister made her feelings clear when asked about possible bad blood between Ceballos and Gavi.
She stated – “there is no rivalry (between Gavi and Ceballos) as my brother is a much better player than Gavi.”
Amusingly, the pair are supposed to meet yet again as both Gavi and Ceballos are part of Spain’s squad to face Norway and Scotland at the EURO 2024 qualifiers.
As per the reports by Marca, the new Spain boss Luis de la Fuente has demanded the players bury the hatchet. This is what Ceballos had to say about the order from his national team coach:
The coach was aware that we had had our differences. He told us to talk about it, and that’s what we’ve done. We’ve talked about it. Everything that happens in the field, stays there. We have to go in the same direction.
If the good atmosphere and good vibes don’t work, I’m not going to run for him and he’s not going to run for me. This must be set aside. Now we are companionsCeballos during a press conference
Spain vice-captain Dani Carvajal, who himself was involved in a fiery altercation against reserve Barcelona goalkeeper Arnau Tenas, was asked about the recent clashes between his two Spanish teammates Gavi and Ceballos.
Carvajal made it clear that both players are now playing under the same shirt for their national sides, and there is no friction between them off the pitch.
Though statements of Carvajal and Ceballos make it sound otherwise, we find it hard to believe that water is under the bridge between Gavi and Ceballos.
With the two el Clasico rivals set to collide once again in the second of the Copa del Rey semi-finals, it’s going to be riveting seeing the two Spanish midfielders go at it once again.