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Celta de Vigo
May 11, 2011
• Estadio Ciudad de Valencia, Valencia
Referee: José Luis Paradas Romero
• Attendance: 17000
This result leaves Levante in a good position to retain their status in La Liga and Barcelona now have two league games to play before the Champions League final at Wembley against Manchester United. Thank you for joining us on Goal.com!
Ben Hayward has reported on the celebrations in Barcelona: Huge applause and cheers here. It didn't go exactly to plan, but Barca are champions and their fans are very happy. Hordes of people are already starting to make their way to Canaletas for a big party which is likely to go on for most of the night. And they still have the Champions League final to come. Not bad.
Pep Guardiola's men have won their third consecutive La Liga title and Barcelona's 21st overall! The leaders for the large majority of the season, and labelled one of the greatest sides of all time! Barcelona are champions!
It is over! Barcelona are the champions of Spain!
The congratulations are beginning in the Barcelona dugout, they know they are now champions!
Barcelona are four minutes plus stoppage time away from winning their third consecutive La Liga title!
The Spaniard can finally come on and he is replacing David Villa, who has had another disappointing match.
Pedro has been waiting too come on for a very long time but Barcelona have been keeping possession so easily that there has not been a break in play.
It is a possession game for Barca at the moment, the Levante players are either too tired of too defensive to press them at the moment.
Levante make another substitution as Pallardo is replaced by Gorka Larrea.
Barcelona do not seem to eager too press ahead and get the victory now, a draw would be an acceptable result for both sides. Is there another goal in this game?
Ben Hayward has given an update on the atmosphere on the streets of Barcelona as we enter the latter stages of the game: Another glorious attempt from Messi has livened up the Barca fans after a quiet period. There is relaxation among the fans here, but Barca like to win in style and their fans don't want a draw - they want to become champions with a victory. And if it comes from a moment of brilliance from Messi, all the better.
Goalscorer Felipe Caicedo is coming off to be replaced by Stuani as the lone striker of Levante.
Messi drives forward again, terrorising the Levante defenders before dragging a shot an inch by the right post! So unlucky from the Argentinian!
Levante have put a cork on their attacking play for the time being, they may be starting to accept the point that they currently have.
Yellow Card Iborra
Afellay is brought down near the right corner and Lionel Messi goes close from the resulting free kick by whipping it just over the crossbar.
Yellow Card Piqué
Gerard Pique earns the first booking of the match after pulling the shirt of Caicedo after being turned by the big striker.
Caicedo goes down in the box after a push from Fontas! No! the referee does not give the penalty! It did look like a dive from the Ecuadorian!
Andreu Fontàs Prat
It is all very intricate from the away side at the moment, the hosts have regrouped in defence.
The game is getting stretched now and Levante are awarding the Barcelona players slightly more room down both flanks.
HUUUUY! Messi nearly scores a wonder goal after taking it around four Levante players before passing the ball at the left corner only for it to bounce of the post!!
Ben Hayward has given an update on the atmosphere on the streets of Barcelona: Police presence in the streets around Plaza Catalunya and Canaletas is substantial. Streets have been taped off in anticipation of a big party. Real Madrid presented the Copa del Rey to their fans in the capital today, but if Barca win the league this evening, that party is likely to pale into insignificance. They're not quite ready to celebrate here yet, though, after a sloppy end to the first half.
Afellay is unlucky with a long range shot with his weaker foot that goes a couple of feet by the right hand post. Munua did look worried and was scrambling across goal!
Barca trade passes on the left flank, Villa to Abidal to Xavi to Messi, who lays the ball off perfectly for a potential runner but none of his team mates takes the chance!
Vibrant start to the second half, Barcelona look to have increased their play up a gear!
The match has re-started in Valencia and although both sides would be relatively content with a 1-1 draw, we can expect to see some chances in the second half!
Half time in Valencia. Levante are currently holding Barcelona in a 1-1 stalemate, however this would still be enough for the Catalans to win La Liga. Can Pep Guardiola's men gain the title with a victory? Or will the hosts spoil the party with a win? Join us in 15 minutes to find out!
Our man in Barcelona Ben Hayward has given an update on the proceedings: Pep Guardiola didn't look amused after that goal and there were plenty of bemused groans here too. But the Barca fans around me - some Catalan, some Argentine, some Dutch, among others - seem pretty relaxed. After all, as things stand, they would still be champions. And they have Messi.
HUUUUY! Lionel Messi is so close to putting Barca back ahead with a free kick from the edge of the box that goes inches by the right hand post!
Goal Felipe Caicedo
GOOOOOOOOOOOOAL FOR LEVANTE!!! A misunderstanding between Pique and Valdes allowed Caicedo to run in and pass the ball into the empty net! 1-1 !!
Our man in Barcelona, Ben Hayward, has given his opinion on the match so far: The city of Barcelona is getting ready for a party. The streets were already chaotic as people rushed around before kick-off. Many people work until 8pm here (when the match started) and will have missed the opening minutes, but they probably all got to a screen in time for Keita's goal. And they'll be up for a few hours yet, unless Levante do the unthinkable and turn this around. Unlikely: the party is starting.
David Villa is hungry to end his goal drought! He almost succeeded with a wonderful curled shot from the left hand side that just went wide of the right hand post!
Eric Abidal just tests Munua with a shot from range but it is just hit into the mid drift of the Levante goalkeeper.
After a frustrating start, Barcelona are spraying the ball about confidently and look very dangerous going forward.
Victor Valdes is called into action after Caicedo powered a shot at goal with his left foot, but the Levante striker was already ruled offside.
Barcelona are one step closer to the La Liga title!
Goal Seydou Keita
GOAL! GOAL! GOAL ! Barcelona score after Xavi picks out Seydou Keita with a wonderful pass over the top of the Levante defence and the Malian powers a header into the top corner! What a goal!
Xavi's whipped free kick evades everyone and the box and goes wide, it was begging to be headed in!
Lionel Messi earns a free kick by jinking in between Levante defenders only to be pulled back. Good set piece opportunity for Barca!
Javi Venta has defended well against Afellay in the last few moments, firstly keeping the Dutchman camped in the corner and then ushering the ball out of play after Messi had played a pass through the Levante defence to the winger.
However, the hosts have had a few snap shots at goal and the latest comes from Xavi Torres who just volleys wide of the left hand post.
The home side have had a few rare period of possessions but their passing has been too forced and rushed and as a result, Barcelona are being handed back possession cheaply.
Caicedo and Xisco Nadal link up for Levante as the Ecuadorian sets his team mate up for a shot at the edge of the box that is just dragged wide.
Levante are defending rigidly in two banks of four and Barcelona cannot seem to find an opening at the moment.
Barca are being very patient in their play at the moment are are enjoying a lot of possession, however no goalscoring opportunities yet.
Strong play again from Caicedo to evade a challenge on the left channel and whip a cross in to Valdo who just misjudges his header! Good chance for Levante!
The home side are working very hard to attempt and win back possession, but they will not be able to keep this pace up for long.
Great hold up play from Caicedo to bring his team mates into the game and earn a free kick from a Javier Mascherano challenge.
The Catalans have got into their stride early and have started their short passing game in the midfield area.
Barcelona have started with purpose here! Ibrahim Afellay's touch just let him down after he got in behind Levante to the left hand side!
Levante and Barcelona are two of the top three teams on form for the second half of the season so this promises to be an interesting encounter!
The game has kicked off in Valencia! Can Barcelona secure the title this evening? We will see in the next 90 minutes!
This is the starting eleven of Barcelona: Valdés, Alves, Piqué, Mascherano, Abidal, Busquets, Xavi, Keita, Afellay, Messi, Villa.
The teams are in and this is how Levante will be lining up tonight: Munúa, Javi Venta, Ballesteros, Nano, Juanfran, Pallardó, Valdo, Iborra, Xavi Torres, Xisco, Caicedo.
Barcelona have the opportunity to win their third consecutive La Liga title this evening. Only a point is needed for Pep Guardiola's men to become champions but they face stern opposition from Levante who still have their sights on a top 10 finish in the league table.
Hello, and welcome to Goal.com's live coverage of the La Liga clash between Levante and Barcelona at Ciutat de Valencia.
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