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February 23, 2013
• Camp Nou, Barcelona
Referee: Carlos Velasco Carballo
• Attendance: 57629
David Villa 52'
L. Messi 60'
Shots on Target
That's all from me for this evening. Thank you very much for joining us at Goal.com for the game. Good night!
FULL-TIME: BARCELONA 2-1 SEVILLA Jordi Roura's side fought back from a goal down to secure all three points at Camp Nou, thanks to goals from Lionel Messi and David Villa. The Blaugrana will be glad to have got back to winning ways ahead of their Copa del Rey clash with Real Madrid this week, having lost 2-0 to Milan in their previous match.
90' + 3'
After an uneventful period of added time the referee blows his whistle to mark the end of the game!
90' + 1'
There will be three minutes of added time at Camp Nou...
TELLO HAMMERS A SHOT OVER!! Barcelona should add a third when the ball finds its way to the young Spaniard at the back post but after taking a touch to set himself he fires an effort high over Beto's goal.
Messi whips the free kick into the box towards Sergio Busquets but Rakitic beats the Barca sub to the ball and nods it out behind his own goal for a corner to the home side.
Yellow Card Botía
Free kick to Barcelona just outside the Sevilla penalty area over on the right. Botia is handed a yellow card for the foul on Alves.
Xavi sprays a pass out to Alves on the right, who then cuts the ball back to Messi who is lurking on the edge of the Sevilla box. The attacker tries to pick his spot and place the ball into the bottom right corner but his shot goes just the wrong side of the post.
A woeful pass from Rakitic stops a Sevilla attack in its tracks after Negredo had made a promising run out on the left. The Croatian midfielder, instead of sliding a pass to his team-mate, opted to fire one out for a goal kick to Barcelona.
STAT: Barcelona have completed 636 passes tonight, compared to Sevilla's 303. The Catalan giants have outclassed their opponents in that respect.
Messi and Tello have linked very well in this second half since the latter was introduced at the break. Even Tello's passing has been good, which is saying something as that is often the thing that lets him down.
Emery is distraught about that Negredo miss! He is cursing to the high heavens down on the touchline.
NEGREDO CLIPS A SHOT OVER!! The Spaniard has a wonderful opportunity to equalise for Sevilla after latching on to a scything pass from Rakitic but his delicate finish flies over the crossbar.
Xavi's corner is headed away by Kondogbia and Sevilla try and launch a quick counter attack but it is snuffed out by Pique.
Barca win a corner on the right after Tello's curling shot is deflected behind by Coke.
VALDES TIPS MANU'S SHOT WIDE! The Barcelona goalkeeper is at full stretch to keep out Manu's rising shot from distance as Sevilla threaten to score an equaliser here.
Beto claims the ball well at the feet of Villa inside the Sevilla box after Barcelona had carved the Andalusian side's defence wide open.
The home team make another change as Iniesta is given a rest for the final 20 minutes. Sevilla have no let-off though - Xavi is the man brought on.
Andrés Iniesta Luján
RAKITIC DRAGS A SHOT WIDE!! Navas bursts down the right for the away side and pulls a neat pass back to his Croatian team-mate but Rakitic's finish is wayward as the ball drifts past the left-hand post.
That's rubbish from Negredo! The Spain international was introduced for Sevilla a few minutes ago and his first effort at goal goes backwards. Not what Emery will have wanted!
MESSI HAS BLOOD ON HIS HANDS!! No, he hasn't committed murder at Camp Nou, but his right hand is bleeding. The Argentine was dispossessed by Navas and as the Spaniard moved away from the challenge he accidentally stood on Messi's hand.
HOW DID THE REF NOT SEE THAT HANDBALL?! Beto clearly carries the ball out of the area as he slides to stop Messi from reaching it, but the referee must have had other things on his mind as he failed to give a free kick to Barcelona. Poor officiating from the man in yellow.
Another fantastic cross from Alves nearly results in a third goal for Barcelona, but under pressure from Messi, Fazio is just able to shepherd the ball behind for a corner.
STAT: That is Messi's 38th Liga goal of the season, in just 25 games. Outrageous.
MESSI PUTS BARCELONA AHEAD!! The Argentine increases his record of goals in consecutive Liga goals with a calmly-taken finish from 10 yards after playing a delightful one-two with Tello.
Tello has really made a difference in this second half, his positive approach in less than 15 minutes further highlights how Alexis' performance levels have dipped in recent months. The Chile international has looked a shadow of the player that arrived from Udinese in 2011.
The France U-20 international has been linked with Manchester City in recent days, having put in some fine performances for his Andalusian side this season.
Sevilla make their first change of the evening as they bring on the impressive young midfielder Geoffrey Kondogbia for Gary Medel.
The attacker's header was well-placed but that goal was all about the assist - Alves' whipped cross that found Villa on the penalty spot was superb.
Assist Daniel Alves
Goal David Villa
GOALLLL!!! VILLA HAS EQUALISED FOR BARCA!! The Spain international heads his side level after getting on the end of an enticing cross from the right by Alves. We're all square here at Camp Nou!
A promising Blaugrana move breaks down in a promising position when Song over complicates a pass to Iniesta. They are knocking at the door though, a break through looks imminent.
Barcelona appeal for a penalty after Villa is blocked inside the penalty area but that was more accidental than anything else by Botia, as the former Valencia man tried to run across him. The referee, quiet rightly, waves play on.
Tello's first involvement is a positive one as he skips past a challenge from Koke before hammering a cross into the box.
Unsuprisingly the Catalans made a change at the interval after a disappointing first half. Cristian Tello has been brought on for Alexis, who again failed to have an impact.
Barca get the second half underway here at Camp Nou...
HALF-TIME: BARCELONA 0-1 SEVILLA The visitors silenced the Barcelona crowd when they took the lead through La Masia graduate Botia late in the half. The Catalan giants dominated possession without scoring, and they paid the price for their lack of product in the attacking third as Unai Emery's side went in ahead at the break.
45' + 1'
And there is the half-time whistle. Sevilla lead Barcelona 1-0 at Camp Nou!
Magical play from Iniesta! The ethereal attacker jinxes his way past Coke on the left before sending an inviting cross into the box. There are no Barcelona players in the right place to divert the ball home though, as it flies out for a throw-in on the opposite side.
Unai Emery will be ecstatic with that. His side have barely threatened in the first half but they are a goal up as we approach the break thanks to Botia's header.
SEVILLA HAVE TAKEN THE LEAD!! Rakitic drives a free kick to the back post that is curled into the box by Coke. Former Masia player Botia is the man who meets it on the penalty spot, and he sends a downward header past Valdes and into the back of the net.
Barca continue to push forward as the first half wears on but Beto in the Sevilla goal has still only had to make one save of note so far - from Messi in the 23rd minute.
STAT: Barcelona have only won two of their last five matches in all competitions (W2, D2, L1).
Navas doesn't look like he fancies it tonight. The speedy winger has faded after a bright start, particularly after clashing with Mascherano a few minutes ago. Just now he went in for a tackle with Iniesta, didn't win the ball, and then threw himself to the floor in the hope of winning a free kick.
But that's another tame effort from Messi! Again the ball flies over Beto's crossbar.
Yellow Card Fernando Navarro
Barcelona have a third opportunity to score from a set piece...
SEVILLA HAVE JUST MADE A MESSI SANDWICH! The Barca forward tries to squeeze through a gap between Medel and Navarro but the Sevilla players have other ideas as they step across to block the Rosario-born attacker.
Sevilla's most dangerous player so far, Navas, is down on the right after a collision with Javier Mascherano. The Spanish winger wins a free kick for his troubles, but it is wasted by Rakitic as Alex Song heads the ball away from danger.
Again Barcelona's talismanic Argentine fails to test Beto though, on this occasion his curling effort flies a yard or so over the crossbar.
Messi wins a free kick 20 yards from the Sevilla goal just right of centre after a couple of challenges from Manu and Botia send him tumbling to the floor.
Iniesta is a joy to watch. The Spain international strains every sinew in his left leg to keep the ball in play over on the left, regains his composure instantly, and then drifts past the challenge of the Sevilla right-back Coke.
Sevilla, on the rare occasions that they do win the ball off Barcelona, have done absolutely nothing with it. The home team are pushed so far up the pitch that when they lose the ball they immediately press their opposition and retrieve possession.
GOOD STOP FROM BETO!! The Sevilla goalkeeper is forced into making a smart save at his near post from Messi after the Ballon d'Or winner shifts the ball from his left foot to this right and fires a shot towards the top corner.
ALVES' SHOT DEFLECTS JUST OVER!! The Brazilian full-back, as he so often does, gets into a good attacking position and fires an effort at goal that flicks off the back of Botia and loops onto the roof of Beto's goal. The Sevilla goalkeeper breathed a sigh of relief as that bounced over the crossbar, as he was clearly beaten by the deflection.
STAT: Messi has scored in his last 14 league appearances for Barcelona. Will he extend that record this evening? Let me know your thoughts on Twitter @charliefscott.
Sevilla test Valdes for the first time, (kind of), as the Barca goalkeeper throws himself on a cross from the Sevilla right-back Koke. The defender found himself in space after a neat back-heel from Jesus Navas.
Messi takes the set piece but the Sevilla wall stands firm as the ball strikes Fazio and cannons up field.
Barcelona win a free kick 20 yards from goal when Fazio trips Alexis as he tries to drive into the penalty area.
Dani Alves hits the deck after an altercation with Rakitic and Barcelona have a free kick just inside their half on the right-hand side.
Messi and Iniesta bewitch the Sevilla defence with a quick passing move, but the Argentine cannot get past Botia on the edge of the box and the away side are able to hack the ball away.
STAT: Pique is playing in his 150th Liga game this evening. The centre-back has playing in Spain's top division for Real Zaragoza and Barcelona during his career.
Thiago appeals for a penalty after crumpling to the floor inside the Sevilla box but the referee ignores his furious gesticulating. Replays show the man in the middle got that spot on, Thiago just lost his footing there.
Barcelona win a corner on the left after Beto fails to prevent the ball from crossing the line after David Villa's cross deflects off the legs of Fazio.
The home side are already camped in Sevilla's half, with Iniesta seeing a lot of the ball in the opening minutes.
Barcelona fashion their first chance of the evening after some fine link-up play between Lionel Messi and Andres Iniesta. The former dances past a couple of challenges on his way into the Sevilla box before shifting the ball out to Iniesta on the left. The Spain international tries to cut back on to his right foot to shoot but is tackled confidently by Federico Fazio.
Ivan Rakitic intercepts the ball from Barcelona's Thiago on the halfway line, but his through ball that is aimed towards Baba is picked off by Pique.
That throw-in is cleared away by the head of Gerard Pique though, as Barcelona get a hold of the ball in midfield for the first time.
The visitors work the ball forward quickly on the left through Manu del Moral and Fernando Navarro and win a throw-in in an advanced position in Barcelona's half.
We are underway here at Camp Nou...
We are edging closer and closer to kick off here at Camp Nou. Before the game starts I'd love to hear your predictions on the score, send them over to @charliefscott on Twitter.
Sevilla also rest players tonight, as Unai Emery keeps one eye on their semi-final second leg against Atletico Madrid as Alvaro Negredo and Jose Antonio Reyes are replaced by Baba and Manu del Moral.
Jordi Roura rotates the Barcelona squad with a Clasico double header on the horizon, as Xavi and Sergio Busquets are among those withdrawn from the starting XI. The due are named on the bench for the Catalan giants, as well as Jordi Alba. Martin Monyoya, Alex Song and Thiago start in their absence.
Sevilla (4-2-3-1): Beto; Coke, Botia, Fazio, Navarro; Medel, Maduro; Navas, Rakitic, Manu; Baba
Barcelona (4-3-3): Valdes; Alves, Pique, Mascherano, Montoya; Iniesta, Song, Thiago; Alexis, Messi, Villa
Both teams clearly have an eye on their Copa del Rey semi-final second legs in the coming week, as each coach chooses to rest players. I'll have both starting XIs with you in the very near future...
My name is Charlie Scott and I'm the lucky devil guiding you through the game tonight. As always, you can get in touch with me at any point during the game by hurling your thoughts over to @charliefscott on Twitter.
Good evening ladies and gentlemen and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE coverage of this evening's Liga clash at Camp Nou between Barcelona and Sevilla.
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