The rivalry between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona is epic.
The LaLiga giants will play each other for the 254th time on Wednesday (3 p.m. ET) in the return leg of the Copa del Rey semifinal. Real Madrid leads the series with 101 wins to Barcelona’s 100, with 52 draws.
On the pitch, the rivalry known as “El Clasico” dates to 1902 when Barcelona beat Real Madrid 3-1. Off the pitch, the two clubs represent opposing political positions, with Los Blancos of Madrid standing in for Spanish nationalism and the Blaugrana a symbol of Catalan independence.
Until about the 1950s, Barcelona dominated the rivalry while winning multiple championships, but the arrival of Argentine soccer star Alfredo di Stefano in 1953 swung the balance toward Madrid. Another Argentine, Lionel Messi, reversed fortunes again when he signed with Barcelona in 2004.
Here are some numbers to know about what many consider the soccer world’s biggest rivalry.
7: FC Barcelona’s rank in Deloitte’s Football Money League 2023. Madrid is second behind Manchester City. Both Spanish titans have seen their revenues fall from pre-pandemic levels.
14: Real Madrid’s total Champions League titles, including last year’s win. Los Blancos have brought the trophy home more than any other team. Barcelona has five.
35: LaLiga league titles for Real Madrid, nine more than Barcelona.
44: Goals Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo scored in el Clásico during the nine years they faced each other in Spain. Messi scored 26 for Barcelona while Ronaldo netted 18 for Real Madrid.
81,044: Capacity of Real Madrid’s Santiago Bernabéu stadium.
99,354: Capacity of Barcelona’s home ground, Camp Nou.
135 million: Real Madrid Instagram followers. Barcelona has 119 million.
$782 million: Real Madrid’s 2022 revenue, according to Deloitte’s Money League 2023, about $84 million more than Barcelona’s.