Barca loses to last-place Le­ganes, Real to Sevilla

The Myanmar Times - Weekend - - Sport -

FIRST it was Barcelona. Then Real Madrid.

Both Span­ish league lead­ers were stunned Wed­nes­day, with Barcelona los­ing 2-1 at last-place Le­ganes and Madrid fall­ing 3-0 at Sevilla, mark­ing the first time since 2015 that they lost on the same day. The thrilling night also was marked by Pablo For­nals’ beau­ti­ful goal from about 45 me­ters (50yards) away in Vil­lar­real’s 3-0 win at Ath­letic Bil­bao, and by Va­len­cia’s win­less streak be­ing ex­tended to seven matches af­ter a draw against Celta Vigo.

Barcelona’s loss came as Lionel Messi made his 700th ap­pear­ance with the club, in­clud­ing 55 un­of­fi­cial games. It was the sec­ond con­sec­u­tive set­back for the de­fend­ing cham­pi­ons.

“We lost five points in three days,” Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde said. “It’s dif­fi­cult to ex­plain.”

The Span­ish pow­er­houses have 13 points each af­ter six rounds, two points in front of Atletico Madrid, which de­feated Huesca 3-0 Tues­day for its sec­ond straight league win.

Real Madrid and Atletico play the city derby at San­ti­ago Bern­abeu Sta­dium on Satur­day. Alaves could join Barcelona and Real Madrid at the top of the stand­ings if it wins its home match against Getafe on Thurs­day.

BARCELONA’S DE­BA­CLE Messi’s cel­e­bra­tion of his mile­stone match with the Cata­lan club was marred by a Le­ganes team which had only one point from its first five league games and was com­ing off three straight losses. The club from Madrid’s sub­urbs had never earned a point against Barcelona in its three sea­sons in the first di­vi­sion.

The 53rd-minute win­ner at Bu­tar­que Sta­dium was scored by Os­car Ro­driguez, a former mem­ber of Real Madrid’s youth teams who is on loan with Le­ganes. It came af­ter a bad mis­take by Barcelona de­fender Ger­ard Pique, who gave the ball away while try­ing to clear it from in­side the area. Na­bil El Zhar had scored the host’s first goal a minute ear­lier to off­set Philippe Coutinho’s first-half opener for Barcelona, which has con­ceded seven goals in its first six matches.

Luis Suarez started the match on the bench and couldn’t do much when he was brought on in the sec­ond half to try to re­verse the team’s dis­ad­van­tage.

Messi has 58 fewer matches than An­dres Ini­esta with Barcelona. Xavi Her­nan­dez holds the club record with 869 games.

MADRID’S FALL Real Madrid en­tered the match at Sevilla with a chance to take sole pos­ses­sion of first place for the first time this sea­son, but it didn’t take long be­fore it found it­self in a deep hole.

Por­tu­gal for­ward An­dre Silva scored in the 17th and 21st min­utes to take his league-lead­ing tally to six goals, and Wis­sam Ben Yed­der added an­other in the 39th to leave Sevilla in con­trol at the Ra­mon Sanchez-pizjuan Sta­dium.

“It’s sim­ple, we gave it away in the first half,” Madrid mid­fielder Casemiro said. “Then it was im­pos­si­ble to come back.” Luka Mo­dric’s goal early in the sec­ond half was called off af­ter a video re­view showed he was off­side.

Madrid’s only pre­vi­ous set­back in the league this sea­son had been a draw at Ath­letic Bil­bao in the fourth round.

Marcelo ap­peared to in­jure a mus­cle mid­way through the sec­ond half but coach Julen Lopetegui had al­ready made all three sub­sti­tu­tions.

Sevilla has won three in a row in all com­pe­ti­tions, outscor­ing its op­po­nents 14-3. It moved three points be­hind Madrid and Barcelona in the league.

“Sevilla was bet­ter and de­served to win,” Lopetegui said. “We didn’t start the way we wanted and paid for it by con­ced­ing two quick goals.” – AP

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