Barcelona presented Real Madrid with an ideal early Christmas gift by delivering a blow to Sevilla’s title chances, coming back to draw 1-1 at the Estadio Sanchez Pizjuan on Tuesday night.

The Andalusians had the chance to move – at least temporarily – within three points of LaLiga Santander leaders Real Madrid and looked on their way to do just that after Papu Gomez’s first-half opener, but the Catalans later levelled through Ronald Araujo.

Barcelona, perhaps surprisingly, had the better of the night’s action as well on a rainy night in Seville. They had the first chance of the game but Ferran Jutgla headed over after an Ousmane Dembele free-kick.

Dembele started well for Xavi Hernandez’s side and he continued to give Sevilla problems before Frenkie de Jong saw a chance go begging.

Rafa Mir looked to have put the hosts ahead only to be thwarted by the offside flag mid-celebration, but Sevilla then got their lead.

A nicely-worked set-piece ended up finding Papu Gomez at the back post, from where the Argentine was able to finish Ivan Rakitic’s cross.

Barcelona stayed on top as far as possession was concerned, and that control allowed them to level on the stroke of halftime. Dembele was again involved and this time Ronald Araujo did what Jutgla couldn’t earlier, doing well to finish the cross nicely.

Sevilla had the better of the early second-half chances, though Thomas Delaney passed up on two good chances in the space of about a minute.

The hosts’ chances were complicated when Jules Kounde rather needlessly and stupidly saw red. The Frenchman came together with Jordi Alba after being shoulder barged by the Barcelona full-back, then losing his cool and throwing the ball into the Spaniard’s face to be shown a straight red card. Things grew cagey then and the Pizjuan was on edge for the final 30 minutes.

Gavi had a chance with 10 to play before Dembele struck the post shortly after, but the hosts held on for a point.

The draw will suit Barcelona far more than it will Sevilla, with Xavi’s side able to take a lot from the game.

Real Madrid can now pull eight points clear at the top with a win at San Mames on Wednesday as they take on Athletic Club.


Courtesy: MARCA

Facebook Comments