Football’s stars have aligned this weekend as two of the most titanic clashes in the club game take place back-to-back, one after the other on Sunday.
Liverpool and Manchester United start a millennium rivalling fireworks extravaganza at 1:30PM before Barcelona host Real Madrid at 8:00PM.
Since the beginning of the year 2000, the two matches have been contested a combined 81 times across all competitions.
In all that time the duelling juggernauts have produced just two 0-0 draws between them, with one in the Clasico and one in its English equivalent.
So unpredictable are these fixtures that followers would be foolish to turn their attentions from the action for so much as a minute.
However, calls of nature must be answered and loved ones must be placated, so if your attention has to wander from the tumult then bear the following information in mind.
The news.bwin.com number crunchers have collated the data from every Liverpool v Man Utd and Barcelona v Real Madrid clash since the beginning of the year 2000.
In doing so they have identified the minutes in the respective matches most likely to have seen the opening and closing goals scored according to the law of averages.
Meetings between the Red-clad titans of north-English football tend to come to the boil as half time approaches.
Just once in their last ten clashes has the first-goal been netted inside the first quarter of an hour, with the average opener of their 37 post-millennial meetings coming after 34 minutes.
At bwin.com over 0.5 goals between the half hour and the interval can be backed at a handy 7/5.
By comparison their Clasico counterparts in Spain have proven far more impatient to break the deadlock, bagging before the first 15 minutes has expired in six of their last ten meetings.
This is reflected in an average first-goal time of 27 minutes since 2000 – it’s 27/20 that the ball finds the net during the timeslot at Camp Nou.
Just how much the half-time break acts as a lightening conductor for decisive moments in Liverpool v Man United clashes is further highlighted by the average time of the fixtures’ last goal, 62 minutes.
Conversely the law of averages reveals tussles between Spanish football’s big two to be far more likely to witness a late twist, with an average concluding goal time of 70 minutes.
However, the final strike has been coming even closer to the closing whistle in recent editions.
No less than seven of the last ten Clasicos have seen at least one goal inside the last ten minutes, the tinderbox nature of which is demonstrated by odds of just 3/4 about at least one being registered between 75 minutes and full time.