The World’s Greatest Sporting Rivalries

There’s nothing quite like the drama, the tension and the passion of a great sporting rivalry, all you have to do is watch the highlights of the recent Ryder Cup to see what it means to not only the competitors but the fans too. Do you fancy a slice of the action? 2013 will be throwing up some tasty treats so here is our pick of clashes to watch out for.


Barcelona v Real Madrid, Football

Barcelona meets Madrid
Moyan_Brenn / Moyan_Brenn

Is this club football’s greatest rivalry? The Clasico always has a stellar cast list lining up on both sides, and we’re pretty sure 2013 won’t see any end to the tussle for the title of “Greatest Player of All Time” between Ronaldo and Messi as well. Tickets go for many times their face value, but we’ve never heard anyone say it’s not worth it.


India v Pakistan, Cricket

India v Pakistan is always a huge match
mckaysavage / Fantaz

Imagine a match watched by three hundred million people around the globe, all fervently wishing for a win, knowing that this is more than just a match, it’s about history, the division of what was once one country into two, and above all, bragging rights. And it will be happening here, in Birmingham, on 15th June 2013. Tickets are already pretty impossible to get!


Celtic v Rangers, Football

When will the next Old Firm derby be?

If Barcelona v Real Madrid is the greatest football rivalry, then this Glasgow rivalry is quite possibly the most bitter. Known as the Old Firm derby, it’s not just about football but there are bubbling undercurrents of politics, religion and ideology. Pretty heavy stuff. But with Rangers relegated to the 3rd division thanks to financial problems, we’ll have to wait and see if the Scottish Cup or Scottish League Cup can throw up a meeting in 2013.


NY Yankees v NY Mets, Baseball

New York, New York!

This baseball rivalry between two New York teams who are in different leagues, but reside in the same city, was brought about by the brainwave of interleague competition. They are set to continue this tradition in 2013, but it looks like games will not be happening six times a season any more – so the rivalry in this most popular of cities looks like it will be distilled into an ever-shorter space of time.


Australia v New Zealand, Rugby Union

Australia or New Zealand - which loves sheep more?
peterhallwright / jimmyharris

A proud rugby tradition, combined with close geographical proximity, and a whole raft of crude jokes about sheep means this rivalry is always fierce. Watch out for the three Bledisloe Cup matches, played in August in Australia, and August and October in New Zealand.


The Ashes: England v Australia, Test Match Cricket

Can you say whitewash?
TheCreativePenn / Kevin Hutchinson

This biennial event has been going on since 1882, and 2013 is set to see the bitter rivalry continuing. And this year it’s taking place be over here in England, so get yourself a ticket! Test matches will take place between June and September so there’s no excuse.


Ice Hockey Montreal Canadiens v Toronto Maple Leafs, Ice Hockey

Canadians have a friendly reputation
Claudio’s pics / SanGatiche

The oldest rivalry in the National Hockey League, Canada’s premier ice hockey league, this rivalry tears the country apart – it’s about the language divide, the two cities and history once more. They have met an astonishing 871 times since 1917 – and 2013 is set to see them clash all over again.


Argentina v Brazil, Football

This rivalry goes back to before football - imagine that!

Dating back to before football was even a sport, this rivalry stems from colonisation of Argentina by Spain and of Brazil by Portugal. But it’s in football where the talents, the passion, and the competition reaches its highest intensity. With 94 matches between them, it’s 35 wins to Argentina and 34 to Brazil so it’s couldn’t be more evenly matched. There are no matches planned for 2013 – Brazil get automatic qualification for the 2014 World Cup, which is where this rivalry is headed. But will they play a “friendly”?


If you want to get involved then check out our cheap holidays – you’ll need to get a great deal on the holiday as these tickets won’t come cheap. There not only the greatest sporting rivalries, but some of the most sought-after tickets too!