Related

Article

La Liga: Barcelona 1 Espanyol 0

1 November 2013 22:51

Alexis Sanchez scored the only goal as Barcelona struggled to a 1-0 La Liga victory over city rivals Espanyol.

Despite dominating possession for large spells of the match, the leaders were frustrated by a well-organised visiting defence.

Alexis eventually broke the deadlock in the 69th minute when he tapped home from a pinpoint Neymar pass.

Barcelona have now won 21 league matches in a row on home soil and boast a four-point advantage over nearest rivals Atletico Madrid, who play on Sunday.

Gerard Pique returned from a hamstring injury but there was no place for Carles Puyol as Gerardo Martino made six changes from Tuesday’s 3-0 victory at Celta Vigo.

Espanyol made four alterations of their own, with Gabriel Torje among the players to come in.

After withstanding some early pressure from the hosts, Espanyol got a sight of goal in the sixth minute but Torje sent his eventual effort wide.

Alexis had an 18-yard strike punched away by Kiko Casilla at the other end as Barca went in search of a breakthrough.

With Martino’s men dominating possession, Dani Alves nodded the ball back for an advancing Alexis in the 28th minute, but the Chilean failed to get any purchase on a strike that was charged down in the penalty area.

The visitors could – and possibly should – have broken the deadlock against the run of play 10 minutes prior to the break. David Lopez was sent through one-on-one with Victor Valdes, only to be denied by the goalkeeper’s outstretched boot.

On the stroke of half-time, Alves exchanged passes brilliantly with Sergio Busquets just outside the penalty area before fizzing an 18-yard effort against the left-hand upright.

Barcelona continued to enjoy the lion’s share of the ball after the break, and Lionel Messi drew a superb diving save from Casilla in the 54th minute as he got his head to a looping Alves cross from the right.

With the hosts finding it difficult to break down a resolute Espanyol backline, Neymar created an angle for himself on the edge of the 18-yard box and curled a shot inches wide.

Barca finally broke the deadlock in the 68th minute as Neymar threaded a pass through the legs of two defenders to find a grateful Alexis, who was left with a simple tap-in at the far post.

Sergio Garcia forced Valdes into a save from close range with 10 minutes left as Espanyol chased an equaliser, before Messi curled a free-kick narrowly wide late on.

Sponsored links

Friday 6 May

15:00
14:58
14:56
14:25
14:24
13:43
13:27
13:20
13:19
13:12
13:11
12:57
12:22
12:14
11:31
11:08
10:07
10:04
09:14
08:47
07:27
06:59
06:38
06:37
04:55
04:16
03:37
03:36
03:05
02:20
01:31
01:29
01:01
00:53
00:35
00:32
00:24
00:07

Thursday 5 May

23:54
23:53
23:41
23:03
22:58
21:15
21:15
20:27
20:05
19:43
19:22
19:06
18:54
18:51
18:36
18:24
18:05
18:03
17:49
17:27
17:26
17:18
17:08
16:53
16:44
16:09
16:07
15:57
15:44
15:31
14:56
14:46
14:18
14:17
13:58
13:50
13:02
12:44
12:36
11:36
10:58
09:59
09:34
09:18
07:13
06:31
06:25
06:13
05:14
04:31
04:15
04:12
03:08
02:39
02:32
02:31
02:29
01:37
01:32
01:10
00:31
00:08
00:02
00:00

Wednesday 4 May

23:51
23:36
23:36
23:18
22:38
22:02
21:52
21:31
21:06
20:15
19:35
19:27
19:10
18:52
18:47
18:16
17:59
17:49
17:09
17:02
16:59
16:36
16:24
15:51
15:47
14:43
14:33
14:18
14:03
13:55
13:48
13:32
13:07
12:49
12:17
11:41
10:25
09:45
09:04
06:59
06:54
05:52
05:11
03:05
02:52
02:43
02:38
01:49
01:45
00:58
00:50
00:34
00:19
00:05

Primera División table

# Team MP D P
1 36 +75 85
2 36 +44 85
3 36 +73 84
4 36 +13 64
5 36 +11 58
6 36 -7 57
7 36 +6 52
8 36 +1 45
9 36 +0 44
10 36 -5 43
11 36 -5 42
12 36 -10 42
13 36 -19 41
14 36 -31 40
15 36 -16 39
16 36 -23 36
17 36 -22 35
18 36 -24 35
19 36 -29 35
20 36 -32 29

Facebook