The mad race for the title in Spain continues. While the four leading teams failed to decide between themselves in their direct clashes during La Liga Matchday 35 – FC Barcelona vs Atlético de Madrid (0-0) and Real Madrid vs Sevilla (2-2) – Barça traveled to Valencia to challenge Levante at the Ciutat de València stadium this Tuesday evening on behalf of the 36th round of the Spanish championship. The Blaugranas had one goal in mind: to resume their forward march to temporarily take control of La Liga and thus dream until the end of the Spanish league title. To validate the maintenance of the Granotes, 14th at the start of this game, Paco López composed a 5-4-1 with Miramon, his captain Morales and Marti alone in point. For his part, Ronald Koeman again lined up a 3-5-2 with in particular Pique, Lenglet, De Jong as well as the duo Griezmann-Messi in attack, with the tenure of Dembélé in right piston.
The first opportunity came very quickly as De Jong recovered a ball to the right of Levante’s area to serve Pedri in withdrawal but the Spanish international sent a heavy shot out of the frame (2nd). Then, three minutes later, same duo for a new alert on the cages of the premises: De Jong tore off a long opening to serve in withdrawal Pedri who stumbled this time on the opposing goalkeeper, author of a sumptuous parade (5th ). After this big start for the Blaugranas, the Granotes put their foot on the ball a little more, without being dangerous, like this distant attempt by Morales (17th). And while Barça purred, Messi arose and masterfully took back a center of Alba countered to deceive Fernandez and open the scoring (0-1, 26th), scoring his 29th goal of the season in La Liga.
Levante did not give up and upset Barça
An achievement that had enough to free the Catalans, more enterprising, evidenced by these attempts by Alba (28th) then Messi (29th). Barcelona were pushing for the break and were logically rewarded. Thanks to a perfect withdrawal from Dembélé, author of a beautiful tumble on the right, Pedri only had to push the ball into the net to double the bet (0-2, 34th). After the break, Messi’s band was still hungry and the Pulga unscrewed in the area and thus failed to weigh down the mark (47th). Levante had control of the leather and, despite a missed lob signed De Jong (56th), completely reversed the situation of this part, thanks to a double from Morales, first scorer of the head (1-2, 57th) then d ‘A sublime volley from the left after a loss of ball from Messi (2-2, 59th). A deserved equalization but which had the merit of waking up FC Barcelona, who regained the advantage thanks to a clinical strike from Demblélé to the right of the penalty area (2-3, 64th). The French world champion signed his 6th goal of the season in the league.
Despite this new advantage on the scoreboard, the Catalan club did not show much serenity and Levante, who likes to annoy the top names in the Spanish league this season (victory in Madrid, 4 points out of 6 taken against Atlético de Madrid), was playing his luck to try even to snatch a point. And what had to happen happened. After playing Dest, Toño saw his cross victoriously taken over by Sergio Leon, ahead of Pique to cut the trajectory and deceive Ter Stegen (3-3, 83rd). The score did not budge any more and, at the end of a crazy meeting, the two teams parted back to back, a rather logical result after 90 minutes. FC Barcelona (2nd, 76 points), which still loses precious points in the title race, returns to Real Madrid and comes back to one point behind Atlético de Madrid. But the Blaugranas are especially missing an opportunity to seize the chair in La Liga which may well no longer be present, two days from the end. Levante (13th, 40 points), who remained on 4 defeats in his last 5 outings, can be delighted with this point obtained and will indeed evolve in the elite of the Spanish championship next season.
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