Ousmane Dembele‘s strike despatched Barcelona three factors clear on the prime of La Liga with a tense 1-0 win over Atletico Madrid on Sunday. Earlier David Silva produced a masterclass to assist third place Actual Sociedad beat Almeria 2-0, whereas Actual Betis moved fourth with an entertaining 2-1 win at Rayo Vallecano. Struggling Sevilla earned a vital 2-1 win over Getafe to climb out of the relegation zone on aim distinction. Capitalising on champions Actual Madrid’s defeat by Villarreal, Barcelona got down to make an announcement victory over Atletico on the Metropolitano.
Shorn of suspended prime scorer Robert Lewandowski, Xavi chosen Ansu Fati up entrance in his place, however it was Dembele who made the distinction, ending a slick transfer within the twenty second minute.
Atletico ramped up the strain, with the excellent Ronald Araujo clearing off the road from Antoine Griezmann on the dying, however Diego Simeone’s aspect couldn’t discover an equaliser.
Each groups completed with 10 males after Ferran Torres and Stefan Savic have been despatched off for brawling with one another on the ground as tempers soured.
“It is a win, however it’s not simply three factors. It offers us morale and confidence for what’s left of the league,” Xavi instructed reporters.
“We’re able to profitable at place as robust as this, struggling, being a household.
“We knew learn how to endure and we take three golden factors. It is an actual assertion that we’re candidates to win this league.”
Barcelona have conceded simply six objectives of their first 16 La Liga matches however Griezmann twice got here near discovering the equaliser Atletico craved.
The Catalans solely mustered two photographs on track and Atletico goalkeeper Jan Oblak mentioned his aspect deserved extra.
“We had a superb recreation, aside from the primary 25 minutes,” Oblak instructed DAZN.
“We pressed properly, we had probabilities, however lacked a little bit of luck to attain.”
“We began badly, the primary 25 minutes we had little confidence, and later we awoke, however at 1-0 down it is already tougher.”
Defeat means Atletico languish in fifth, 14 factors behind leaders Barcelona.
“It is not a worrying scenario however it’s one which now we have to cope with,” Simeone instructed reporters.
“The fact is that we misplaced. It is true the crew had the benefit to remove one other outcome, that did not occur as a result of we did not put it away. What occurs within the containers is essential.”
– Decisive Dembele –
Teenager Fati had an early effort brilliantly blocked by the sprawling Jose Gimenez, as Barcelona dominated the opening exchanges.
Xavi mentioned on Saturday Atletico barely have any gaps of their defence however Pedri uncovered one to create the opening aim.
The midfielder capitalised on house in entrance of the field, earlier than feeding Gavi, who teed up Dembele to clinically slot residence.
Marcos Llorente had Atletico’s first respectable alternative after half an hour when Griezmann scooped a ball delicately over the defence to set him in, however Araujo deflected his effort vast.
The hosts wrestled again management and Marc-Andre ter Stegen made an excellent save at full stretch to disclaim the pink-haired Griezmann, turning into more and more influential towards his former aspect.
Atletico started the second half in decided trend, pushing Barca deeper and deeper.
Solely Griezmann’s compatriot Dembele supplied the leaders an outlet on the break and he had a drive deflected into the side-netting.
Xavi introduced on Franck Kessie for De Jong and it helped regular the ship, with Barcelona managing some stretches of possession which pissed off the house followers.
Purple playing cards for Torres and Savic reignited the sport in stoppage time and Griezmann may need snatched a degree however for Araujo’s essential clearance on the road.
Actual Sociedad’s veteran Spanish playmaker Silva, 37, capitalised on defensive confusion in Almeria’s field to nip in and hearth residence the opener simply after half-time.
Alexander Sorloth drilled residence his sixth league aim of the season 5 minutes later to increase La Actual
(Apart from the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV workers and is printed from a syndicated feed.)
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