Goal.com - Home

thumbnail Hello,
 
Played
March 17, 2012 7:00 PM GMT
Estadio Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán — Sevilla
Referee:‬ José González‎
Attendance:‬ 40000‎
 
 
Xavi 18′
 
Messi 25′
Top of the Match
Xavi
Xavi
FC Barcelona
Messi
Messi
FC Barcelona
Flop of the Match
Emir Spahic
Emir Spahic
Sevilla
Emir Spahic
Emir Spahic
Sevilla

Sevilla 0-2 Barcelona: Xavi and Messi on target as Pep Guardiola's men stay in title race

Pep Guardiola's side earned a fairly straightforward victory away from home as the reigning champions continue their fight to regain their Liga title

By Luke Matthews

Barcelona cruised to a comfortable 2-0 win against Sevilla at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan on Saturday to provisionally reduce Real Madrid's lead at the summit of La Liga to seven points.

Xavi opened the scoring for Pep Guardiola's side with a well-struck free-kick before Lionel Messi's sumptuous finish added a second for the reigning champions, who had the result wrapped up by the interval.

Before kick-off, both sets of fans and players in the stadium sent their well wishes to Eric Abidal, who is set to undergo a liver transplant. Once the football began, it was the visitors who made the brighter start to proceedings and nearly opened the scoring on eight minutes thanks to a fortunate deflection.

Adriano made his way towards the Sevilla goal before trying his luck from the edge of the box. His effort flicked off the leg of Emir Spahic before rebounding off the top of the crossbar, much to the relief of Andres Palop.

Four minutes later a clever Messi pass picked out Pedro in space as he ran through on goal. However, the attacker tried to be too clever with his finish, hitting the ball with the outside of his foot, allowing the goalkeeper made a smart save.

The Blaugrana made their early dominance count when they grabbed a deserved opener on 18 minutes. After being awarded a free-kick just outside the box, Xavi duly stepped up to curl the ball over the wall and into the top corner of the net despite Palop's best efforts to keep it out. It was the midfielder's ninth league goal of the season.

Guardiola's men doubled their lead on 25 minutes through a moment of Messi magic; the Argentine's 51st competitive goal this term for Barca. The 24-year-old played a clever one-two with Andres Iniesta before nutmegging Spahic and lifting the ball over the keeper with deadly precision.

However, despite the Catalans controlling play in the opening half hour, Sevilla sprung into life and nearly pulled a goal back on 33 minutes following some poor defending from Gerard Pique. The former Manchester United defender failed to deal with Jesus Navas' speculative cross, as Manu del Moral sneaked in behind him to power his header against the crossbar.

In first-half stoppage time Sevilla had Palop to thank for keeping them in the game. After some great build-up play, Messi slid the ball to Cesc Fabregas who saw his shot from 15 yards out blocked at point-blank range by the veteran glovesman.

The Andalusians continued to miss decent opportunities in the second period with Manu again the guilty party on 65 minutes. Navas whipped an inviting ball towards the back post but the forward could only watch on as he slid it wide of the target, much to the relief of the visiting defence.

The Blaugrana could have put the result beyond doubt on 73 minutes when Messi found Iniesta with a precise through ball. The Spain International looked to have committed the keeper but could only dink his shot wide, while Messi also had a late strike disallowed for offside as his side comfortably held on for the three points.

Barcelona return to league action on Tuesday evening when they entertain Granada while Sevilla will hope to bounce back from defeat on Thursday away against Racing Santander.



Sevilla

25
Andrés Palop
Goalkeeper
3.50
3
2.50
5
Emir Spahic
Defender
17′ 68′
1.50
14
Julien Escudé
Defender
49′
2.50
14
Luna
Defender
2.50
15
3.00
8
Gary Medel
Midfielder
76′
2.50
11
Ivan Rakitic
Midfielder
58′
2.00
21
Reyes
Striker
64′
2.50
14
2.50
12
Fred Kanouté
Striker
2.50

FC Barcelona

3.50
1
3.00
22
2.00
3
Piqué
Defender
31′
3.00
21
Adriano
Midfielder
80′ 85′
3.50
4
Cesc Fàbregas
Midfielder
69′
4.00
6
Xavi
Midfielder
18′ 82′
4.00
8
4.00
14
3.00
16
Busquets
Midfielder
3.50
10
Messi
Striker
25′
3.00
7
Pedro
Striker
83′

Substitutes

13
Javi Varas
Goalkeeper
0.00
27
Cala
Defender
68′
2.50
-
Rodriguez
Defender
0.00
19
Perotti
Midfielder
64′
3.00
15
0.00
9
Negredo
Striker
0.00
-
0.00

Substitutes

0.00
13
0.00
5
0.00
5
Muniesa
Defender
0.00
6
3.00
-
Seydou Keita
Midfielder
69′
0.00
9
0.00
20
Tello
Striker

Coach/Manager

-
Míchel
Coach
0.00

Coach/Manager

0.00
-
 
  • Goal
  • Own Goal
  • Penalty
  • Penalty Missed
  • Yellow Card
  • Assist
  • Penalty Save
  • Penalty Shootout Goal
  • Penalty Shootout Miss
  • Yellow Card / Red Card
  • Red Card
  • Substitution IN
  • Substitution OUT
  • Injury
  • Goal.com Rating
  • Goal.com Man of the Match
  • Goal.com Flop of the Match
  • Top & Flop Global Ranking
  • Fans' Man of the Match
  • Fans' Flop of the Match
Results
 
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
C. Ronaldo C. Ronaldo
Striker
Real Madrid
28 6
Diego Costa Diego Costa
Striker
Atl. Madrid
27 5
Messi Messi
Striker
Barcelona
26 6
Karim Benzema Karim Benzema
Striker
Real Madrid
17 0
Alexis Sánchez Alexis Sánchez
Striker
Barcelona
17 0