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First Division - Day 7

Barcelona 2 - Valencia 1

Barcelona: Víctor Valdés; Dani Alves, Puyol, Piqué, Maxwell; Xavi (Mascherano 67'), Busquets, Keita (Abidal 86'); Messi, Villa (Pedro 82'), Iniesta. 4-3-3.
Valencia: César; Bruno, Ricardo Costa, David Navarro, Mathieu (Vicente 82'); Manuel Fernandes, Albelda; Pablo Hernández, Banega (Mata 66'), Jordi Alba; Soldado (Aduríz 61'). 4-2-3-1.

0-1. 37. Pablo. Struck deflected shot past Valdés after Mathieu laid ball back.
1-1. 47. Iniesta. Ran on to Xavi's return pass and drilled shot low past César.
2-1. 62. Puyol. Came from behind to head Xavi's strong cross wide of keeper.

Yellow cards: Soldado 39', Keita 54', Albelda 71', César 89', Aduríz 91', Valdés 91'.

Valencia are off the top spot after they were beaten 2-1 by Barcelona on Saturday evening. The Chés went ahead at first a few minutes before half time when Pablo latched on to Mathieu's pass and fired in a shot which deflected off Keita and Valdés in to the net. And the local keeper had to be at his best to prevent Pablo from extending the lead a couple of minutes later. But Messi wasted a good chance, and the home side felt they should have had a penalty when Villa's header hit Pablo on the arm before the half time whistle.

Guardiola's half time pep talk had an immediate effect though, Iniesta picking up a return pass from Xavi to equalise just a minute after the restart. César did well to keep out a Villa header minutes later, and with just over an hour gone Puyol powered another header past the keeper from Xavi's cross. The Catalans could have added to their lead after that had César not kept out Messi and Villa, but they had already done enough to take three important points which takes them level with their opponents in the table.