First Division - Day 36

Real Madrid 4 - Barcelona 1

Madrid: Casillas; Sergio Ramos, Pepe, Heinze, Marcelo; Diarra, Gago, Sneijder; Guti (Robinho 71'), Raúl (Van Nistelrooy 75'), Robben (Higuaín 60'). 4-3-3.
Barcelona: Víctor Valdés; Zambrotta, Puyol, Márquez (Sylvinho 46', Edmilson 60'), Abidal; Xavi, Touré Yaya, Gudjohnsen (Giovani 23'); Messi, Bojan, Henry. 4-3-3.

Team changes: Madrid: Marcelo, Guti for Cannavaro, Saviola / Barça: Touré Yaya, Gudjohnsen, Bojan for Thuram, Deco, Eto'o.

1-0. 12. Raúl. Latched on to loose ball and curled shot round Víctor Valdés.
2-0. 21. Robben. Got ahead of defence to head Guti's long free kick into net.
3-0. 63. Higuaín. Picked up short pass from Diarra and shot wide of keeper.
4-0. 78. Van Nistelrooy (penalty). After Puyol blocked Robinho cross with his arm.
4-1. 87. Henry. Controlled Messi through ball and steered shot past Casillas.

Real Madrid celebrated the title with a resounding 4-1 win over arch-rivals Barcelona on Wednesday night. Frank Rijkaard's side were obliged by tradition to applaud their opponents on to the pitch, and once the game started they were wiped off the field. Raúl opened the scoring after Guti had battled through, and Robben headed in a Guti free kick to put the locals two up in the first twenty minutes.

Rijkaard responded by taking off Gudjohnsen to try and shut off Robben, and Henry struck a free kick wide. Valdés had to save from Guti and Robben though before the break, and Sylvinho cut out Marcelo and Xavi cleared off the line from Diarra soon after the restart. Higuaín made it three though after picking up a pass from Diarra and running past a couple of defenders, and Van Nistelrooy also got in on the act, coming on to make his first appearance after a long injury lay-off and converting a penalty almost immediately after Puyol blocked Robinho's shot with his arm at close range.

Messi brought a couple of saves out of Casillas and then set up Henry for a late consolation for the visitors, although nobody was celebrating, and Xavi had to leave the field early after picking up a second booking. The defeat left Barcelona out of the race for even second spot, and they will now have to play a tricky Champions League qualifier in August. Laporta tried to stem the tide of criticism announcing that ijkaard would leave at the end of the season and that B team coach Pep Guardiola would be taking over, but protests are expected once again at next Sunday's match against Mallorca.