- The first leg of this season's El-Clasico will be played next Sunday at the Camp Nou
- The derby has been dominated by the rivalry of Messi and Ronaldo in the past decade
- Messi could miss the fixture after sustaining an injury in their 4-2 victory over Sevilla on Saturday, October 20
The 2018-19 La Liga season will mark the first after Cristiano Ronaldo's stunning move from Real Madrid to Serie A giants, Juventus, therefore ushering in a beginning of a new era for the Spanish league.
The move also signaled the end of Ronaldo's rivalry with Barcelona superstar, Lionel Messi, who is now captaining the Nou Camp outfit.
Whereas their rivalry dominated any fixture between the two La Liga clubs, this season's El-Clasico could mark the first without Messi and Ronaldo in a decade.
Messi sustained an injury in the 17th minute in his side's 4-2 win over Sevilla at the Camp Nou on Saturday, October 20, and therefore will miss next Sunday's mouthwatering clash against Madrid.
A tweet sent out by the club after the Sevilla tie confirmed that Messi had a fracture of the radial bone in his right arm and will be out for approximately three weeks.
Messi has been in spectacular form so far this season, scoring seven goals and putting on five assists in just nine games.
The injury implies that Barca will be without their best player in a tough week where they are slated to face Inter in the UEFA Champions League before their La Liga encounter in the Clasico.
It also means that the tie will be played with neither the Argentine nor Ronaldo for the first time since December 2007, when Messi was injured for that game too.
At the time, Julio Baptista's goal was the difference in a 1-0 narrow win for Real.
Currently, Madrid are going through turbulent times under new manager, Julen Lopetegui, having collected only four wins in nine La Liga matches, losing to Levante at home on Saturday.
They now sit 5th on the La Liga standings with 14 points, fou behind league leaders, Barcelona.
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