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Barcelona vs Real Madrid Super Cup today

The 2012 Spanish Super Cup battle between bitter rivals Barcelona and Real Madrid is set to kickoff Thursday from Camp Nou in Barcelona.

Two of the world’s top footballers will be on display in Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. Both superstars led the Spanish La Liga in goals last season, and promise to pick up right where they left off last spring.

Of course fans will want to keep an eye on both strikers in this matchup, as they each have incredible goal scoring prowess and are locks to perform.

However, Messi and Ronaldo aren’t the only world-class stars guaranteed to shine when Barcelona and Real Madrid clash.

Let’s take a look.

Andres Iniesta

A complete midfielder, Barcelona’s Andres Iniesta defines Spanish football with his flawless short passing, brilliantly-timed runs and finesse strikes on the ball. The 28-year-old veteran tallied an assist in Barca’s 5-1 win over Real Sociedad in the team’s La Liga opener on Sunday.

Iniesta has been a critical piece to the Spanish national team’s success over the years, and has been a part of La Roja’s recent World Cup and European Championship victories. It’s safe to say, even if he doesn’t put up big numbers on Thursday, his play will make an impact on the game.

With Messi playing up front, Iniesta will put plenty of pressure on Madrid’s defense, forcing them to retreat and defend often.

Cristiano Ronaldo has scored at least one goal against Barcelona in each of the past three meetings with his side’s greatest rival. Ronaldo scored 46 goals in La Liga last season, finishing as the league’s second-leading scorer behind only Lionel Messi, who netted 50.

The 27-year-old Portugal native has been playing at a high level for a long time though, and will be a threat to score multiple times against Barca. Ronaldo had five shots in Madrid’s draw against Valencia in the squad’s La Liga opener on Sunday.

Ronaldo’s speed on the ball and incredible striking ability makes him one of the sport’s most unique and polarizing players. He is at his best when he is playing stylish football for Real Madrid it seems.


Lionel Messi

Arguably the greatest player in today’s game, Barca’s Lionel Messi is a goal-scoring machine. Messi has two goals already in La Liga this season, and will be a threat to put the ball in the back of the net every time he touches it against Real Madrid on Thursday.

Only 25, Messi is still improving, which is outright scary. His small stature and unmatched control on the ball makes him one of the most entertaining players to watch make a run from the midfield into the opponent’s final third.

Messi scored three goals against Madrid in the two squads’ two Super Cup matches in August of 2011, and will surely be the favorite to open up the scoring at Camp Nou this summer.

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