Gerard Pique stated La Liga’s title race is Actual Madrid’s to lose after Barcelona have been held to a goalless draw towards Sevilla on Friday. Barca’s first slip-up since getting back from the three-month hiatus palms Madrid the prospect to regain high spot this weekend. After their emphatic 3-Zero win over Valencia on Thursday, Zinedine Zidane’s side will transfer stage on factors with the Catalans in the event that they beat Actual Sociedad on Sunday and above them on account of their superior report head-to-head. “Seeing what we have accomplished within the final two rounds, it is going to be very troublesome to win this league,” stated a despondent Pique afterwards.
“From what I’ve seen, it is very arduous to see Actual Madrid dropping factors.”
Sevilla, in third, and Valencia, in eighth, all the time seemed able to shifting the dynamic on the high of the desk, with Madrid capitalising to climb again to the summit for the primary time since they beat Barcelona on March 1.
Requested about Pique’s evaluation, Barcelona coach Quique Setien stated: “I feel it comes from frustration. I’m optimistic. I feel will probably be robust for anybody to take most factors.”
A helpful level for Sevilla, in the meantime, provides them a five-point cushion over Getafe in fifth, albeit having performed a recreation extra.
Barca may have few complaints on the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan.
They by no means actually troubled Sevilla for any extended interval and the closest Lionel Messi got here to scoring the 700th objective of his profession have been a pair of free-kicks tipped over.
The sight of goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen jogging up for a late nook demonstrated how huge a blow they thought-about dropping factors to be.
But Actual Sociedad are nonetheless within the hunt for Champions League qualification and can provide Madrid no ensures on Sunday whereas video games towards Getafe, Athletic Bilbao and Villarreal imply there are nonetheless loads of hurdles for Zidane’s workforce to beat.
Barcelona although would seem to have the harder run-in, with Athletic Bilbao, Atletico Madrid, Villarreal and native rivals Espanyol arising.
Messi was well-contained by Sevilla and it might be the Argentinian was feeling the consequences of a 3rd consecutive 90 minutes in 9 days.
Setien selected to not relaxation his captain in both of two snug wins over Leganes or Actual Mallorca.
As an alternative, Antoine Griezmann dropped to the bench, with Martin Braithwaite most popular within the entrance three alongside Messi and Luis Suarez, who made his first begin since January after recovering from a knee harm.
Sevilla’s Jules Kounde shot simply large of the submit early on however Barcelona managed the opening 30 minutes, even when possibilities have been few and much between.
Messi’s curled free-kick was headed off the road by Kounde and Braithwaite virtually had a tap-in when Tomas Vaclik spilled, however the ball was hacked away.
The half ended with a conflict and Messi was on the coronary heart of it, squaring as much as after which pushing over Sevilla’s centre again Diego Carlos. Messi was sad with Carlos’ problem on Suarez however escaped punishment.
Ever Banega got here on at half-time for Sevilla and gave them extra goal in midfield. Munir El Haddadi’s shot from the angle was palmed away by Ter Stegen.
The sport opened up within the remaining 15 minutes as Jordi Alba made an important block to forestall Munir’s go establishing a straightforward end within the center.
Alba may then have teed up a winner too however Suarez swept the defender’s pull-back over the bar.
Sergio Reguilon, on mortgage at Sevilla from Madrid, had the very best likelihood however he failed to attach along with his weaker proper foot.
Earlier, Gerard Moreno’s winner gave Villarreal a 1-Zero win away at Granada, placing them inside touching distance of the highest 4.
Actual Mallorca claimed a 1-1 draw towards fellow strugglers Leganes due to a shocking late free kick from Oscar Rodriguez.
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