Lionel Messi: Messi takes Barcelona eight points clear of Atletico | Football News
BARCELONA: Barcelona beat nearest challengers Atletico Madrid 1-Zero due to an excellent free kick from Lionel Messi on Sunday to maneuver eight factors clear on the prime of La Liga and nearer to a 25th Spanish title.
Barca’s all-time prime scorer Messi wrapped his left foot across the ball to ship it flying over the wall and inside the highest nook within the 26th minute to register his 600th profession purpose.
Atletico, who clinched the 2014 title on the Nou Camp however haven’t received there since 2016, might have minimize the hole on Barca to 2 factors with a victory however coach Diego Simeone opted for a sometimes conservative strategy.
Thomas Partey’s wayward strike from distance was Atletico’s solely risk and though Simeone made two attacking substitutions, his facet couldn’t power Barca goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen into making a save.
Kevin Gameiro had a purpose accurately dominated out for offside late on for Atletico shortly after Luis Suarez was additionally denied by the assistant referee’s flag, and the Uruguayan put a chipped try simply broad of the far submit in stoppage-time.
Barca lead the standings on 69 factors after 27 video games, Atletico have 61 and champions Actual Madrid 54.
Atletico had hammered Sevilla 5-2 and Leganes Four-Zero of their final two video games and travelled to the Nou Camp on a run of eight consecutive wins in all competitions and with an additional day’s relaxation than Barca, who had been held to a 1-1 draw by relegation-threatened Las Palmas on Thursday.
Each coaches might name on full-strength groups and Barca supervisor Ernesto Valverde began file signing Philippe Coutinho however misplaced captain Andres Iniesta to harm within the first half and was compelled to name on the often-criticised Andre Gomes.
What ought to have been a showdown for the title didn’t dwell as much as expectations as Atletico centered on cancelling out Barca and limiting Messi to as little area as attainable.
That they had not counted on the Argentine’s exceptional potential to attain from free kicks, nevertheless, and Messi determined the sport, and fairly probably the title race, with a 3rd beautiful set-piece purpose in as many video games.