Ivan Campo believes Real Madrid’s famous history of comebacks shows his former club should still be wary of Barcelona in LaLiga’s title race.
A phenomenal unbeaten run by Zinedine Zidane’s men – now standing at a club-record 37 matches stretching back to April – has helped to establish them as leaders in Spain’s top flight by three points with a game in hand.
Sergio Ramos’ last-gasp equaliser in El Clasico at the start of this month checked Barca’s ambitions to close the gap, but two-time Champions League winner Campo believes instances such as Madrid’s stunning 2006-07 fightback to steal the title and last season’s eventual near miss should serve to focus minds at the Santiago Bernabeu.
He told Omnisport: “As we are still in December, there are five months to go. The worst part, ‘the hill of January’ which is quite hard and, basically, the last two months of the season when you have to deal with the Copa del Rey, key games in Champions League and normally teams struggle in that period.
“Can Barcelona can reach Real Madrid? Yes, of course. It did happen other seasons when Barcelona was in the top and Real Madrid did reach them. And who won at the end? It was Real Madrid.
“There is still a long way to go in order to say if Real Madrid will win LaLiga or not.”
Ramos repeated his Camp Nou heroics to snatch a late winner against Deportivo La Coruna in the match that took Madrid’s unbeaten streak to a new record mark of 35.
The Spain defender’s inspirational leadership qualities have drawn parallels with Madrid great Fernando Hierro, although Campo believes there are stylistic differences between Ramos and his esteemed ex-colleague.
“There are similarities, but Fernando did have other way to play compared to Sergio,” he said.
“I think Sergio is more dynamic. Fernando was more static, having a long amazing pass from my point of view. Sergio, perhaps, has better short pass, being more aggressive in attack and everyone is talking about Sergio now because he has scored several winning goals.
“Fernando did not have that fortune, he lifted many trophies. But Sergio is now the player who believes until the end. When the game is over at 90 minutes he still thinks in that two or three minutes of the added time to try to score another goal.”
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