The first El Clasico on American soil lived up to the hype Saturday night as Barcelona downed Real Madrid 3-2 at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida, thanks to a 50th-minute victor from Gerard Pique.
However, Los Blancos maintained their composure and countered with a pair of goals to knot the score at two at halftime.
Pre-season is essentially an experiment; getting players back to match fitness, giving those on the periphery a chance to impress, fielding and testing new players and systems. Real Madrid, shell shocked.
The game has long since sold out - tickets on the black market are now costing upwards of $900 (770 euros) each - although only 30% were bought by fans in the South Florida region, with the remainder being snapped up by the rest of the United States as well as people in 50 countries.
Ivan Rakitic extended the lead for Barca minutes later after he smashed home from 18 yards to make it 2-0 in the 7th minute.
Before the showdown in "The Magic City" the last time Barcelona and Real Madrid played a football match outside Spain was 35 years ago when they took part that summer's Copa Presidente de la Republica held in the Venezuelan city of Barquisimeto.
"As we have all been saying, the sooner this is cleared up the better for all of us, Neymar included", Luis Suarez said of the uncertainty surrounding the Brazilian superstar.
"He is one of the best players in the world and I always want the best players in my team".
While Ramos would like to see the back of Neymar, compatriot and good friend Dani Alves is hoping to see a whole lot more of his countryman and encouraged him to be "brave" and move to Paris.
It would be tied before the break, though, on a rampage by midfielder Mateo Kovacevic in the 14th minute, and then a strike from 21-year-old Marco Asensio that involved a handsome setup from Kovacevic that eluded Barca's Jordi Alba in the 36th minute. Sunday night, the Spanish, we take more, the planetary grandees will play in the world-class resort city - Miami. Zidane's team have been somewhat underwhelming during pre-season, and they will be determined to bounce back from a torrid display last time out and not to lose any bragging rights to Barca ahead of the new season.
A third consecutive defeat in pre-season (albeit the first on penalties against Manchester United) must be frustrating for a man who is a natural born victor.
It was the first time the teams met in a friendly since 1991 and only the second time outside of Spain.
The last official El-Classic was played in Madrid and ended in favor of the guests (2: 3).
Furthermore, while Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane is still basking in the glory of winning the La Liga and Champions League double, new Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde's reign has yet to begin in earnest.