Ivan Rakitic’s goal gave Barcelona all three points against Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu on Saturday evening.
The league clash followed the Copa Del Rey semi-final which saw the Catalan visitors win 3-0 in midweek and it was pressure on Madrid to keep their title hopes alive.
Santi Solari’s side dominated the early proceedings but they found Gerard Pique in their way and the Barca centre back continued to be a problem throughout the 90 minutes, blocking chance after chance for Los Blancos.
Barca had few chances in the first half but the struck a killer blow when Rakitic linked with Sergi Roberto and the Croatian international finished off by chipping the ball over Thibaut Courtois.
Gareth Bale proved to be an absent figure in attack for Madrid and he was replaced by Marcos Asensio in the second period.
Karim Benzema was arguably Madrid’s best player but even he failed to take advantage of some clear cut chances.
Pique was still proving to be a tricky customer and he did all he could to prevent an equaliser.
Lionel Messi almost added a second just moments before time, whilst Philippe Coutinho also came close.
The win ensures Barca go 12 points clear of Madrid, who remain in third place.