Barcelona 2-1 Valencia: Barca create history in record winApril 14, 2018
Barcelona continued their dominance in La Liga this season as they broke an all-time unbeaten record with a 2-1 win over Valencia at the Nou Camp.
Ahead of second place, Atletico Madrid by 14 points, Barcelona broke a 38-year record set by Real Sociedad after goals by Luis Suarez and Samuel Umtiti in either half.
The last three fixtures between these two free scoring sides had not seen any goals in the first half, before a sumptuous through ball pass from Phillipe Coutinho released Uruguay striker Luis Suarez to tuck home and give Barca the lead on 15 minutes.
Valencia had their fair share of opportunities in the first half with Goncalo Guedes and in-form striker, Rodrigo both going close.
Guedes had several chances to level after Suarez’s strike – firstly with a long-range effort before a deflected shot whistled inches wide.
An open and free-flowing game continued to create chances at either end but Los Che’s top scorer, Rodrigo should have levelled the scoreline but for Marc Andre Ter Stegen, to tip his half-volley onto the post after the goalkeeper’s astray pass.
Rodrigo continued to miss vital chances after the break, when his low strike went under the goalkeeper but was cleared off the line by Gerard Pique.
Barca made Valencia rue the chances they had missed a moment later, when Umititi rose highest from a Coutinho corner to head past Neto at the start of the second half.
A successive quiet game for star man, Lionel Messi nearly saw him grab a third goal for his side when his 20-yard volley narrowly went wide. Messi became creator moments later after his mazy run through the Valencia defence saw him pick out Andres Iniesta at the back post, only for his bicycle kick cause Neto to make a stunning save.
The away side were let back in to the game late on, as substitute winger, Ousmane Dembele bundled over Jose Gaya in the box. Captain and regular penalty taker, Dani Parejo made no mistakes from 12 yards out despite Ter Stegen guessing the right way.
Despite some late Valencia pressure, Barcelona managed to create history and go 39 games without a defeat.
The results mean Barcelona will head to Celta Vigo in midweek, on the verge of claiming the league and put behind them a dramatic midweek which saw them crash out of the Champions League to Roma.
Barcelona XI: Ter Stegen, Alba, Umtiti, Pique, Sergi Roberto, Paulinho, Iniesta (Suarez, 85), Busquets, Coutinho (Dembele, 79), Suarez, Messi
Valencia XI: Neto, Vezo, Garay, Gabriel, Gaya, Soler, Parejo, Kondogbia, Guedes (Pereira,79), Santi Mina (Vietto, 79), Rodrigo (Zaza, 80)