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La liga 2013/14 – standing after week 13

November 11th, 2013

Barcelona extended their lead at the top of the table to three points after Atletico Madrid slipped to a draw against Villarreal, currently fourth place in the league. 

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Messi injured as Barça beats Betis

November 11th, 2013

Barcelona continued their epic start to the season with another win last night against Betis. However, Leo Messi had to be replaced early on, after apparently suffering a knee injury and will undergo tests today (Monday) to discover the extent of his injury.

The early chances were created by the home side, with Victor Valdes forced to make two great saves early on in the first half, but as the Catalans settled in so came the chances. Cesc set up the opener for Neymar from Alex Song at 34 minutes, with Pedro putting Barça two goals up just a couple of minutes later.

Back on after the break Betis powered against the Barcelona goal only to hit the post, but quarter of an hour into the second half Cesc made it three; he also scored a fourth in the last quarter hour from a header. Betis’ only goal came in injury time, after Alves brought down Matilla in the penalty area, leaving the final score at 4-1 to FC Barcelona.

0-1 Neymar (min 34)
0-2 Pedro (min 36)
0-3 Fábregas (min 62)
0-4 Fábregas (min 78)
1-4 Jorge Molina (min 91)


La liga 2013/14 – standing after week 12

November 4th, 2013

Barcelona remains at the top of the table, still just one point ahead of Atletico and six in front of Real Madrid. 

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Narrow win in the Barcelona derby

November 4th, 2013

With the All Saints holiday on Friday, the Barcelona derby against Espanyol was played on Friday night rather than Saturday or Sunday as would be more normal.

Barcelona dominated possession from the outset, but were unable to break the Espanyol defence. Espanyol enjoyed a few moments of counter attack and came close to scoring after a mixup with Dani Alves, but Valdes made the save. Immediately afterwards Alves came close to opening the scoring but struck the Espanyol woodwork and in the end the first half ended goalless.

Back on after the break Barça looked revitalised and soon looked like they would score, with a Messi header that looked certain to go in saved by the Espanyol keeper, Kiko Casilla, and Neymar had a go at the goal too. In the end Neymar assisted Alexis to the only goal of the match in the 66th minute and while both teams sought to score, the remainder of the match was goalless.

1-0 Alexis (min 66)


La liga 2013/14 – standing after week 11

October 30th, 2013

Barcelona extended their lead at the top of the table last night, at least temporarily, with most teams in the Spanish League still to play tonight and tomorrow. 

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Barça continues unbeaten run against Celta

October 30th, 2013

Following Saturday’s clasico there has been now let up for the Barça squad, with an away match scheduled for last night against Celta de Vigo. While a number of key players were rested ahead of the Barcelona derby on Friday and the next Champions League clash against Milan next Wednesday, the team got into their stride right from the start.

Once again Alexis showed that his class, putting the visitors into the lead after eight minutes. Celta, managed by one time Barça captain and Barça B coach, tried to apply pressure by moving their defence forward, but the Catalans controlled the match and the home team watched Barcelona’s attempts on the goal coming to nothing, but they must have known is was just a matter of time.

Back on after the break saw Barcelona extend the lead, when Cesc Fabregas hit the bar, for the ball to rebound into the net off the back of the Celta keeper. And a few minutes later Messi set Cesc up to score again, this time cleanly putting the ball into the net.

0-1 Alexis (min 8)
0-2 Yoel (min 47)
0-3 Fábregas (min 53)


Clasico goes to Barcelona thanks to Neymar and Alexis

October 28th, 2013

Saturday was the big one, when Real Madrid visited the Nou Camp to play in “el clasico”. The event is one of the most widely anticipated matches in the world with Spain’s two biggest teams acting out on pitch the antagonism felt between centralist Spain versus Catalonia. At least the days of Jose Mourinho amping up the tension are over though.

Both teams started perhaps a little nervously, with neither doing much at first. And then Iniesta ran forward with the ball passing to Neymar, who scored the first in the 18th minute and the home crowd was ecstatic. It seemed to spur on Barça too, who were clearly in control of the match. It didn’t stop Madrid from making a good effort on the Barcelona goal towards the end of the first half, only stopped by Valdes.

The break seemed to have revived the visitors, with Barcelona not dominating possession to such an extent and allowing Madrid to take another go at the Barcelona goal. Again Valdes showed what he is paid for.

With Alexis on for Cesc, Madrid continued to apply pressure. However, Barcelona once again brought the game back into their control culminating in the 76th minute with the second goal of the night scored by Alexis. As they continued working, Alves came close to making it 3-0, but in the end it was Madrid’s last minute goal that clawed back the scoreline to 2-1. The goal came too late for the visitors though and the final whistle blew to give Barcelona three more points.

1-0 Neymar (min 18)
2-0 Alexis (min 76)
2-1 Jesé (min 89)


La liga 2013/14 – standing after week 9

October 21st, 2013

With Barcelona dropping their first points of the season, Saturday night provided a couple of hours anxious wait to see what would happen with Atletico Madrid. In the end Espanyol beat Atletico meaning they now fall behind Barcelona by a single point, while Real Madrid are trailing Barcelona by three points to take third place in the table.

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Goalless draw against Osasuna ends Barça’s winning streak

October 21st, 2013

While eight straight wins for FC Barcelona created a new club record for the start of the season, the dream of a new la liga record was ended on Saturday night when they walked away with a single point against Osasuna. The match was marked by the return of Carles Puyol after months laid off with a knee injury and while the Catalans controlled possession from the start, the Basques didn’t allow them to do anything with the ball when in their area. 

Leo Messi, who started on the bench after recovering from his injury, came on twenty minutes into the second half for Xavi, with Tello substituting Pedro almost 10 minutes later but even so, they were unable to penetrate the Osasuna defence. New boy Neymar and Cesc Fabregas both came close to scoring in the second half, but in the end it just wasn’t to be.

The match ended goalless, with a big week for Barça ahead. They play AC Milan in Italy on Tuesday and Real Madrid visit the Nou Camp for the clasico next Saturday. 

 


La liga 2013/14 – standing after week 8

October 7th, 2013

Barcelona remains at the top of the table as both they and Atletico Madrid remain unbeaten this season. Real Madrid remain in third place, followed by Villarreal and Getafe lying fifth. However, to put things into perspective, Barcelona and Atletico have nearly double the points of Getafe.

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