First Division - Day 26

Barcelona 2 - Sevilla 1

Barcelona: Bravo; Aleix Vidal (Dani Alves 54’), Piqué, Mathieu, Jordi Alba; Arda Turan (Iniesta 64‘), Busquets, Sergi Roberto (Rakitic 75‘); Messi, Luis Suárez, Neymar. 4-3-3.
Sevilla: Sergio Rico; Coke, Rami, Kolodziejczak, Trémoulinas; N’Zonzi, Cristóforo (Konoplyanka 62‘); Vitolo Iborra (Juan Muñoz 74‘), Krohn-Dehli; Gameiro. 4-2-3-1.

0-1. 20. Vitolo. Fired volley past Bravo after Trémoulinas crossed from left wing.
1-1. 31. Messi. Curled free kick over defensive wall into far top corner of net.
2-1. 48. Piqué. Turned shot past Rico after Luis Suárez passed across goal.

Yellow cards: Rami 30’, Dani Alves 70’, Sergi Roberto 74’, Kolodziejczak 77’, Piqué 90’.

Barcelona maintain their eight point lead over Atlético Madrid after a 2-1 victory against Sevilla in the last match on Sunday. Sergio Rico had to save from Luis Suárez early on, and Messi rattled the crossbar after a corner came out to him, but with twenty minutes on the clock Vitolo got on the end of a Trémoulinas cross to put the Andalusians ahead. Ten minutes later however Messi levelled the scores with a well struck free kick, and Rico had to keep out Messi and Neymar before Piqué latched on to a Suárez pass at the start of the second half to turn the scoreline around. Both keepers were in action after that, Bravo saving from Gameiro and Rico stopping Neymar and Busquets, and Neymar, Vitolo and Piqué all had late penalty appeals turned down. The result equals the best ever run by a Liga team of 34 matches without defeat, the last time that Barcelona lost being precisely at Sevilla half a season ago. Emery’s side stay in fifth spot, even though they have yet to win away from home in the league during the current campaign.