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El Clasico: A Story of Catalan Independence

El Clasico is the most anticipated regular football fixture on the planet. Player Development Project Lead Researcher, James Vaughan was fortunate enough to experience the rivalry himself in early 2017. The legendary Barcelona vs. Real Madrid fixture got James thinking about the history of his adopted home in Catalonia and the way it has shaped FC Barcelona. In this two part article, we follow James’ match-day experience and find out how Catalan and Barcelona history and social construct interlink.


I emerge from the metro in Badal and start the 10-minute pilgrimage to Camp Nou. I walk in a daze, amazed that I have one of the 99,354 tickets for today’s game; another 650 million spectators from 185 countries will tune in and watch El Clasico over the airwaves.

I’ve lived in Barcelona for nine months and watched games at Camp Nou but I never thought I’d experience El Clasico in the flesh, and with good reason. In the months leading up to kick-off tickets sold for thousands of euros. However, this year Barça’s form wavered (the worst start to a season since...

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