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​Messi has chance to equal El Clásico appearance record

messi gets assurance from Cafu

Lionel Messi could become the player with the joint-most official editions of El Clásico played, matching Sergio Ramos’ 45.

If he plays on Saturday, with the Real Madrid captain set to miss the game through injury, the two would be level on a list that features them ahead of the likes of fellow legends Paco Gento, Manolo Sanchís, and Xavi Hernández -with 42 El Clásicos played apiece.

If Messi features this weekend, he will move level with Xavi as the FC Barcelona players with the most appearances in the fixture in LaLiga, with 29.

Sergio Ramos returned injured from duty with the Spanish national team and, although no official announcement has been made as to his availability, he is not expected to play in El Clásico.

read also:La Liga: Messi happy again but Barca wonder if this Clasico will be his last

This would be only the third El Clásico that he has missed in his career at Real Madrid, and the first time he has missed the fixture in LaLiga. He was absent from the semi-final of the Champions League in 2010/11 (1-1) and the first leg of the Copa del Rey semi-final in 2012/13 (1-1).

Barça have won five of their last seven away games against Real Madrid in all competitions. As for this season, Messi has been in strong form, scoring 29 goals in total.

He is also the top goalscorer in El Clásico history, across the board (26) and in LaLiga (18).

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