A 4-4-2, breaking up the BBC, isn't Carlo Ancelotti's most used formation since joining Real Madrid, but it is the one that has brought him the most convincing success.
Indeed, 'Los Blancos' came out on top in each of the last two 'Clásicos' without one member of their famed attacking trio, instead deploying a bank of four midfielders.
The first time Ancelotti's Real side went into a clash against Barcelona without the BBC was in last season's Copa del Rey final. Cristiano Ronaldo was injured and the Italian fielded Xabi Alonso, Luka Modric, Ángel Di María and Isco across the middle of the park, while Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema led the line.
The 'Merengues' had the upper hand for much of the match and eventually clinched the trophy thanks to a Di María strike and Bale's now legendary gut-busting winner.
Meanwhile, the BBC was again dismantled when Real hosted Barça in the first 'Clásico' of this campaign. This time the Welshman was laid low and the Bernabéu boys claimed a 3-1 victory with a similar set-up to the one described above.
Toni Kroos, Modric, James Rodríguez and Isco pulled the strings in what was one of the club's best performances in recent years, while Cristiano and Benzema split the pickings up front, bagging a goal apiece.
The same line-up produced the historic 3-0 win over Liverpool at Anfield, during Real Madrid's golden patch earlier this season in which results and swashbuckling football went hand in hand.
Read more: Real Madrid: A classic 4-4-2, Real's best shot vs Barça - MARCA.com (English version)
A classic 4-4-2, Real's best shot vs Barça
Reviewed by John walker