Barcelona 1-1 Vallecano: Late goal rescured a draw

Barcelona remain third in La Liga after a late own goal rescued a draw at Rayo Vallecano. However, a crisis is imminent as the defending champions have dropped drop points in La Liga again with their fourth draw.


Barcelona 1-1 Vallecano

The first half belonged to Rayo as they battled for every ball in the centre of the park and, despite creating few clear-cut chances, were the brighter team against a lethargic Barcelona.

Trailing at the break to Unai Lopez’s stunning strike, Barca dominated the second half but missed good chances.

They finally got rewarded when Florian Lejeune bundled into his net under pressure from Robert Lewandowski.

Second-placed Real Madrid face Cadiz on Sunday before leaders Girona host Athletic Bilbao on Monday.

Barcelona made six changes from the side that came from behind to beat Alaves before the international break, with goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen absent through injury.

Barcelona dropped point at Vallecano for a third season in a row
Barcelona dropped point at Vallecano for a third season in a row

His replacement, Inaki Pena, looked shaky from the off and was beaten by Lopez’s ferocious right-foot effort midway through the first half.

Frustrated by a disjointed display, boss Xavi turned to former Manchester City captain Ilkay Gundogan from the bench, and Barcelona dominated the second half.

However, despite taking 10 shots to Rayo’s three after the break, they still needed the help of Lejeune in the 82nd minute, as he clumsily steered the ball past his goalkeeper with Lewandowski waiting to pounce.

Despite a better second-half performance, FC Barcelona struggled to break down Rayo Vallecano’s well-drilled side. As manager of the Catalan club, Xavi Hernandez has yet to record a win over the men from Vallecas.

A draw was a fair result, but a sub par performance from Xavi’s Barcelona.

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TOM is a dedicated soccer writer whose words come alive on the page, mirroring the electric energy of the pitch. With a keen eye for detail and an unbridled love for the sport