The games between Barça and Atlético Madrid are synonymous with goals and spectacular entertainment. Over the last 20 years there have been an average of 4.14 goals a match
A series of crazy games 20 years ago marked the beginning of one of the most amazing runs of matches between the two, in which big scores and great comebacks have proved to be the norm. The fixture has become one of La Liga's most attractive meetings and the spectacular stats show why - since the 1991/92 season, 153 goals in 37 games have been scored, at an average of 4.14 goals a game.
Red cards, comebacks and hat-tricks
The first great game between the two in the 90s came on 20th September 1992, when Hristo Stoichkov got a hat-trick in the 1-4 win at the Vicente Calderón, when the home manager Luis Aragonés was shown a red card. That was to be the start of a great series of matches.
The following season, 1993/94, Barça were three up thanks to a first half hat-trick from Romario, but Atlético Madrid fought back to win 4-3. In the return game at the Camp Nou, Barça turned that result around and won 5-3, with Romario again getting three goals and Koeman and Vizacíno sent off in the first half, before Stoichkov and López were also dismissed before the final whistle.
There were similarly action-packed games in the 1994/95 campaign, when Pep Guardiola scored the opener in the 4-3 win at the Camp Nou against an Atlético team containing their current boss Simeone. Two years later, there was a 3-3 scoreline at the Camp Nou, when Giovanni equalised in the final minutes and soon after, in the quarter finals of the Spanish Cup, Sir Bobby Robson's men made a great fight back to win 5-4, with Pizzi getting a famous goal. Later on in the same season, Barça won 2-5 in Madrid, with a hat-trick from Ronaldo.
Five goals a game in Guardiola era
Between then and the beginning of the Guardiola era, there were plenty of other brilliant games, including a 5-2 win for Atlético Madrid in the 1997/98 season, with a Rivaldo goal from the middle of the pitch or the 0-6 win in 2006/07 when Messi marked his debut with a couple of goals - the first two of many that he has since scored against Atlético.
Under Guardiola, the number of goals per game has increased even more – to five goals a game. Barça have won all four games at the Camp Nou (6-1, 5-2, 3-0 and 5-0), whilst in Madrid there have been two wins for Atlético (4-3 and 2-1) and one for Barça, last season's 1-2 win.