Barcelona recorded another 1-0 win in LaLiga, maintaining their nine-points lead for another week.
Barcelona started the game in their usual 4-3-3 formation, with Gavi as a false winger and Roberto on the right-back. There was almost nothing noticeable for the first half hour, before Inaki Williams received a yellow for showing his frustration by kicking a ball.
In the 32nd minute, Bilbao almost ended up scoring from a corner, but the woodwork was in favor of Barcelona. Then, 14 minutes later, in first-half stoppage time, Raphinha sent Busquets’ pass to the bottom corner, giving Barcelona a commanding lead.
Two teams stepped to the dressing rooms with Barcelona leading the game 1-0.
Bilbao made a double substitution in the 64th minute, bringing in Oier Zarraga and Muniain for Mikel Vesga and Raul Garcia, respectively. Then in the 68th minute, Xavi replaced Ferran Torres with Kessie.
Berenguer came close to equalizing in the 70th minute, but Ter Stegen saved Barcelona yet again. Six minutes later, Serge Roberto received a yellow card for tripping Muniain, becoming Barcelona’s first victim of the night by Gil Manzano.
Then in the 78th minute, Bilbao came closer to equalize once more and then again it was our German wall who saved our lead.
Xavi made a double substitution in the 83rd minute, bringing in Ansu Fati and Marcos Alonso for Sergi Roberto and Raphinha.
Inaki Williams finally got past Ter Stegen in the 88th minute after a string of attempts. However, the joy was short-lived as VAR detected a foul in the buildup and called the goal off.
Though it wasn’t a statement victory, Barcelona managed to grab all three points from a crucial picture.
It’s never easy to play at the San Mames. Barcelona’s record of two wins in the last eight games is not coincidental. However, the atmosphere was even more intense tonight as local fans made their voices heard in response to the recent scandal.
But, once again, Xavi’s players deliver, as FC Barcelona grab 3 points over Athletic Bilbao. Barcelona will enter ‘El Clasico’ with a 9-point lead in La Liga. A win next week will effectively seal Xavi’s league title.
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