A typically ill-tempered Clasico saw Barca reduced to ten men in first half stoppage time with the sending off of Sergi Roberto. Bale was lucky to be on the pitch after a challenge on Samuel Umtiti which left the Welshman's studs in the Frenchman's calf, which he then raked down his leg.
"We watched an incredible game of football and I can't say if the draw is fair or not", said Zidane, who would not be drawn on the referee's performance.
It won't be a Clasico that lives too long in the memory in terms of drama and overall quality, but that won't matter for Barcelona.
Minutes before Messi put Barcelona ahead, Ramos had an animated conversation with Hernandez, as the Spanish global went nose to nose with the man who's been named La Liga's top official for the past three years.
Lionel Messi of Barcelona reacts during the La Liga match between Barcelona and Real Madrid at Camp Nou on May 6, 2018 in Barcelona, Spain. That, though, was when the season only compromised of 18 games, so Barca are on track to make history in a 38-game campaign.
In the end, Barcelona's unbeaten record remained intact, somewhat fortuitously, as Los Blancos were unable to nick a priceless away win.
Real's Ronaldo was substituted at half-time after suffering an ankle sprain while scoring. The Frenchman was cool enough to head back into the six-yard box, where Ronaldo bundled home.
Barcelona famously refused to offer Real the traditional "pasillo" after the capital club returned home with the Club World Cup trophy in December, prompting Zinedine Zidane's men to follow in a similar fashion on Sunday.
"How long he will need I can not tell you but for him, it is a small problem", Zidane said afterwards.
This was also Andres Iniesta last El Clasico.
'He is not just any old player in terms of what he's achieved and the person he is.
Valverde added: "It was clearly a hard match to referee".
"We've spoken a lot about this", Valverde said. "This is football and everything should stay on the pitch". Suarez swept the ball out to the right where Sergi ignored Messi's run to the near post and returned the cross deep to Suarez.