Barça continues while Elche sinks. Fifth consecutive victory for the Blaugrana against the last of La Liga this Saturday afternoon at Camp Nou (3-0), thanks to a double from Robert Lewandowski and a goal from Memphis Depay. The Franjiverdes, reduced to ten from the 14th after the expulsion of Gonzalo Verdu, remain 20th in La Liga with a small point while the Catalans put pressure on Real Madrid, who face Atlético on Sunday, temporarily taking the lead in the championship with one more unit.
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Verdu’s expulsion made it easier for Barca
Elche made it easy for FC Barcelona. Last in La Liga with only one small point before the meeting of the day, Francisco’s men quickly squandered their chance to raise their heads at Camp Nou. Even before the quarter of an hour of play, Gonzalo Verdu belted and “tackled” Robert Lewandowski, who went alone on goal, a gesture sanctioned with a red card by M.Ruiz, the referee of the meeting (14th).
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At eleven against ten, Xavi’s players were easily able to set up and impose their game. After shots from Memphis Depay and Frenkie De Jong pushed back (24th and 26th), Edgar Badia ended up cracking against the inevitable Robert Lewandowski . Alone at the far post, the Pole took advantage of a low cross from Alejandro Baldé to push the leather into the empty goal (34th, 1-0).
Two minutes later, the young 18-year-old left-back found Memphis Depay, who perfectly got around his defender to send a mine under the crossbar and break for Barça (36th, 2-0). The Dutchman’s very first goal this season. Just before the break, Pedri thought of scoring the third goal but was flagged offside and FC Barcelona finally entered the locker room with this two-goal advantage.
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Returning from the locker room, Xavi’s players kept the same intentions. Only two minutes after the kick-off of the second act, Robert Lewandowski took advantage of a cross from Ousmane Dembélé and poor dismissals from John Nwankwo and Edgar Badia to place the leather close to the left post and offer himself a double (48th, 3-0). The eighth achievement for the 34-year-old striker in La Liga, the tenth in all competitions with Barça.
With victory assured, Xavi allowed himself to rotate and rest his frames. Even Robert Lewandowski, the Catalan club’s top scorer, came out in the 72nd, he who had never been replaced during the match by the Spanish coach since the start of the season. With this success against Elche, the Blaugranas temporarily go first in La Liga with 16 points and force the Merengues (15 pts) to achieve a result against the Colchoneros on Sunday. The Franjiverdes, for whom the season promises to be very long, remain last in the championship.
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