Zidane Explains Why Real Madrid Won't Give Barcelona A Guard Of Honour

Bale save Real Madrid against unbeaten Barcelona

Barcelona are on the verge of completing an unbeaten league campaign, but must overcome their biggest remaining obstacle at Camp Nou against the Los Blancos.

The Barcelona vs Real Madrid match is being played at the Camp Nou. The fire has been well stoked by Gerard Pique, who said Real Madrid need not give the Catalans a guard of honour since they did not "participate" in La Liga this season.

Head coach Zinedine Zidane says there is plenty of respect for his rivals but there will be no guard of honour: "We will not do a guard of honour because they didn't do one for us". We, with respect, aren't going to do it because they didn't do it.

"After the Club World Cup they didn't want to do it for us", Zidane told a news conference yesterday.

Rarely in recent years has a meeting between these two sides been of less effect, with Barca having already taken the La Liga crown with a 4-2 win over Deportivo de La Coruna last weekend.

"It's said that they weren't in the competition, but that's not true".

"I don't consider them not doing one a sign of disrespect".

Unified North, South Korea TT team lose
When the athletes appeared on court, the public address system announced that there was no North and no South, but Korea. It is thanks to the IOC that North Korea is participating here in Halmstad, due to their Olympic Solidarity support.

"We also saw the other side with someone like Paulinho, people weren't very happy when he arrived in Barcelona and now he's gone onto become an important hero, an unexpected hero for Barcelona supporters".

Iniesta, who is expected to complete a move to China, has been key in recent months but Valverde said there was no point trying to persuade the 33-year-old.

The great Andres Iniesta will play in his last Gran Clasico this evening.

"We have four games (left in the league) and we will prepare in the best way because we have to finish as high as possible".

Young Achraf Hakimi should, thus, get a rare opportunity to start as the right-back, with Marcelo the full-back on the opposite flank.

When asked about fitness doubts over Raphael Varane and Isco, Zidane said he would decide his team on Sunday, with the Champions League final against Liverpool to come on May 26.

Barca played 45 minutes with 10 men but managed to extend their record undefeated streak in the top flight to 42 matches, a record that stretches back to April 2017.

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