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29th Oct 2018

Gerard Pique tells the Nou Camp to shut up in defence of his biggest rival

The Barcelona defender showed leadership reminiscent of Carles Puyol with this sporting gesture during El Clásico on Sunday afternoon

Reuben Pinder

Gerard Piqué and Sergio Ramos famously have a professional rivalry.

FC Barcelona trounced arch rivals Real Madrid 5-1 on Sunday in a Clásico that spoke volumes about the two clubs’ current situations.

Barça were without their star man Lionel Messi, but put in an excellent team performance, with Philippe Coutinho and Luis Suarez stepping up in their captain’s absence. Gerard Piqué also showed great maturity to recover from recent mistakes when it mattered most.

Real Madrid, meanwhile, looked as disjointed as ever. And this defeat appears to have sealed Julen Lopetegui’s fate, as the manager looks set to be sacked in the coming hours.

Piqué, who recently retired from the Spanish national team, has had an enduring professional relationship with Sergio Ramos, the Madrid captain who embodies the club.

For Spain, the pair put club rivalry aside to play alongside each other, but in the Clásicos, there has always been a tension between the pair. A proud Catalan against a proud Spaniard, representing sides on opposite ends of the world’s most historic and politicised rivalry.

One moment in this weekend’s Clásico, though, demonstrated Piqué’s maturity, leadership and the mutual respect between the two rivals.

As Barcelona fans were signing ‘Sergio Ramos, hijo de puta’ (son of a bitch) from the stands, Piqué signalled to them to stop, suggesting that Ramos did not deserve such abuse.

Barça did their talking on the pitch on Sunday, adding another ‘manita‘ to their head to head record with Real Madrid.

Real Madrid are now lurking in ninth place in LaLiga, seven points behind Barcelona, while the Catalans are cruising at the top, well on their way to retaining the league title.

Antonio Conte looks set to replace Lopetegui once his dismissal is announced, a decision that is reportedly very popular among the players, apart from Thibaut Courtois, who had problems with Conte during their time at Chelsea together.

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