20th June 2024
Sport

La Liga round-up: Barça 11 points clear; Zidane vague about Bale

Two goals from Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi within two minutes ensured Barça broke the resistance of 10-man Atletico Madrid on Saturday to go 11 points clear of their La Liga title rivals.

Diego Costa was sent off in the 28th minute at Camp Nou after insulting the referee but while Atletico held on for almost another hour, Suarez and Messi both struck late to seal the 2-0 win.

Victory leaves Barça almost out of sight with 7 games left to play and maintains momentum ahead of Wednesday’s trip to Manchester United in the first leg of the Champions League quarter-finals.

‘It is three crucial points,’ coach Ernesto Valverde said. ‘We are a little closer.’

‘It gives us a big margin,’ said Suarez. ‘We’ve taken not just one, but two steps forward.’

Barça celebrate
Barça players celebrate a goal against Atletico Madrid (Photo Miguel Ruiz / courtesy FCBarcelona.com)

Suarez intervened with a superb long-range strike in the 85th minute, before Messi added a second in the 86th. The pair have now scored 53 league goals between them this season while for Messi, this was a record 335th La Liga victory.

Antoine Griezmann, who decided against joining Barcelona last summer, was whistled as his name was read out before kick-off.

Zidane vague about Bale

Meanwhile, Zinedine Zidane refused to guarantee Gareth Bale’s future at Real Madrid after the Welshman struggled again in a 2-1 victory over Eibar on Saturday.

Karim Benzema scored twice at the Santiago Bernabeu as Madrid came from behind, ensuring the groans and whistles that had soured the atmosphere for much of the opening hour turned to cheers at the end.

Much of the frustration was again directed at Bale, who started after being dropped by Zidane for the defeat to Valencia on Wednesday.

Asked afterwards if Bale would be at Real Madrid next season, Zidane said: ‘We’ll see, I’m not going to tell you what’s going to happen. Gareth is a Real Madrid player, he has two years left on his contract. We will see. It is not the time to talk about this.’

Spanish La Liga results up to Sunday 7 April 2019

Played Saturday

Girona 1 Espanyol 2

Real Madrid 2 Eibar 1

Rayo Vallecano 2 Valencia 0

FC Barcelona 2  Atletico Madrid 0

Played Sunday

Alaves 1 Leganes 1

Getafe 1 Athletic Bilbao 0

Real Valladolid 0 Sevilla 2

Celta Vigo 3 Real Sociedad 1

Levante 2 Huesca 2

Real Betis/Villarreal (result to follow)

La Liga Table – Sunday 7 April 2019

(Played, Won, Drawn, Lost, Goals For/Against, Points)

Barcelona                31  22   7   2  81  31  73

Atletico Madrid      31  18   8   5  45  21  62

Real Madrid            31  19   3   9  55  37  60

Getafe                      31  13  11  7  38  27  50

Sevilla                      31  14   7  10  51  37  49

Valencia                  31  10  16  5   33  26  46

Alaves                     31  12   9  10  32  38  45

Real Sociedad       31  11  10  10  37  35  43

Athletic Bilbao       31  10  13   8  33  35  43

Real Betis              30  11   7   12   34  39  40

Leganes                 31  10  10  11  31  35  40

Eibar                       31   9   12  10  41  43  39

Espanyol                31  10   8  13  35   45  38

Girona                     31  8   10  13  33  43  34

Levante                  31   9    8  14  43  54  35

Celta Vigo               31   7   8   16  42  53  29

Valladolid                31   7   9  15  24   43  30

Villarreal                  30  6  12  12  38  43  30

Rayo Vallecano      31  7   6   18  34   54  27

SD Huesca              31  5   8  18  33  54  23

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