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Bielsa happy to extend La Liga title fight

28 April 2013 11:36

Marcelo Bielsa praised Athletic Bilbao's spirit after a 2-2 draw with Barcelona prevented the Catalans from winning La Liga this weekend.

Two goals in three minutes from Lionel Messi and Alexis Sanchez had put Barca on course for a win that could have wrapped up the title, coupled with a defeat for Real Madrid at local rivals Atletico.

However, Ander Herrera struck in the last minute, and Jose Mourinho's side went on to win the derby, meaning Barcelona's title party will have wait for at least another week.

Bielsa was happy to see "defensive" tactics pay off for his team as they soaked up as much pressure from Tito Vilanova's as they could before striking late on with a counter-attack.

"I am very pleased with how this tie went," the former Chile coach said.

"The efforts of our players deserved more than dignified defeat.

"The only way we can close the gap on a team like Barcelona is by playing defensively and preserving our energy to attack.

"Their goals in such quick succession pre-supposed our decline, but we reformed our balance, got close to their area and eventually found the answer. We've strengthened our concept as a team."

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Info

Competition
Primera División
Date
27 April 2013
Game week
33
Kick-off
18:00
Half-time
1 - 0
Full-time
2 - 2
Venue
Estadio San Mamés (Bilbao)
Attendance
39750

Goals

Susaeta 27'
(assist by Aduriz) 
1 - 0
1 - 1
67' L. Messi
 (assist by Thiago Alcântara)
1 - 2
69' A. Sánchez
 (assist by L. Messi)
2 - 2

Lineups

# Player Bookings
1
15
6
3
23
18 86'
14 27'
21 40' 90'
20
19
10 90+3'
Coach: M. Bielsa

Substitutes

# Player Bookings
28
9
11
2
13
16
22
# Player Bookings
21 55'
10 67'
8
7
13
15
37

Friday 26 December

Thursday 25 December

Wednesday 24 December

22:46
22:01
21:20
20:39
20:18
19:08
18:35
17:52
17:20
17:07
16:30
16:04
15:45
15:28
15:04
14:59
14:49
14:24
13:43
13:31
13:16
12:49
12:46
12:28
11:53
11:05
11:04
10:25
09:54
08:24
06:14
02:25
01:08
00:44

Primera División table

# Team MP D P
1 15 +42 39
2 16 +34 38
3 16 +17 35
4 16 +16 31
5 16 +13 30
6 15 +8 30
7 16 +5 30
8 16 -1 20
9 16 -3 20
10 16 -4 20
11 16 -6 19
12 16 -8 17
13 16 -14 17
14 16 -5 15
15 16 -18 15
16 16 -11 13
17 16 -14 13
18 16 -16 13
19 16 -16 11
20 16 -19 10

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