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Barca Disappointed, Real Rejoice In Varane

Barcelona may have left the Bernabeu with a vital away goal last night, but they were mainly disappointed at having failed to see off Real Madrid.

The home side were depleted by injuries, and Barca had chances to kill the game after Lionel Messi had sent Cesc Fabregas through to open the scoring just after half-time.

The only consolation for the runaway La Liga leaders is that they will now start as slight favourites to reach the final of the Copa del Rey, when they host the second leg of the tie with an away goal to their name.

"These games are always very tough," Fabregas told Canal Plus after the match.

"Considering how the march went the result could have been more favourable from our point of view.

"But we will be at home for the return leg in front of our own fans. We are in a good rhythm and having a spectacular season."

Real meanwhile, were left to trumpet their gritty performance, which saw them stave off Barca and keep their feet in the Copa del Rey.

The Los Blancos faithful were especially happy with the contribution of their young defender, Rafa Varane.

The French stopper had his best ever display for Real in the crucible of El Clasico, and topped off his rugged defensive performance by scoring the equaliser with an unstoppable header late on.

After the match, as his name rang out among the vibrant Bernabeu crowd, Varane was proud of his achievement.

"I'm very happy with how I played,” he said.

“For me it was incredible and to score a goal is a dream. I still cannot believe it. It is the best match I've had at Real Madrid".

"It is not the best result but it leaves the tie open,” Varane added, tempering his joy with a small dose of reality.

“My teammates congratulated me and I have to keep giving my best".

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