Defeating Osasuna 1-0 in round 33, coach Xavi’s teachers and students raised the gap with Real Madrid to 14 points before the last five rounds in La Liga.
Final result Barca vs Osasuna (1-0)
Score: Alba (85′)
Red card: Herrando (Osasuna, 27′)
Barca soon took the initiative in the match at Camp Nou on the evening of May 2. About half-time, they could have opened the scoring if Pedri took advantage of the opportunity, including a narrow deflection from Alejandro Balde’s cross.
From the 27th minute, Barca also played more than people. Due to a foul in the situation where Pedri came down to face goalkeeper Aitor Fernandez, midfielder Jorge Herrando received a direct red card.
The numerical advantage helps Barca continue to press the field. But on a bad day, opportunities come and go with Robert Lewandowski and teammates. In the 55th minute, Frenkie De Jong missed Pedri’s assist when he ran down the empty space and volleyed into the hand of goalkeeper Fernandez. In the 61st minute, Ousmane Dembele also narrowly missed Osasuna’s goal.
In the 70th minute, after turning the ball past two Osasuna defenders, Lewandowski also hit goalkeeper Fernandez’s hand. Four minutes later, he put the ball in the visitors’ net, but it was not recognized. VAR caught Ferran Torres offside. Lewandowski’s achievement this season still stops at 19 goals after 33 La Liga rounds.
The loss of people made Osasuna’s attacks less and less. The away team focused on long-range shots, but often sent the ball off the post or into the hands of goalkeeper Ter Stegen.
Persevering in pressing the pitch, Barca finally succeeded. In the 85th minute, Lewandowski crossed into the penalty area to let De Jong headed an assist for Jordi Alba. The left-back captain volley bounced goalkeeper Fernandez into the goal.
Barca could have won more if they took full advantage of the opportunities, in the match they launched 21 shots – three more than the visitors. Minutes 90+3, they created a chance to hit three, but Ansu Fati cut his heart off the post. The player wearing the number 10 shirt of Barca has only four goals in 31 La Liga matches and seven goals in 46 games in all competitions this season.
The victory over Osasuna helped Barca raise the score to 82. Real lost to Sociedad 0-2 in the same round, Barca increased the gap to 14 points. If they win on the opponent’s field in the same city of Espanyol on May 14, Xavi’s teachers and students will win La Liga four rounds early.
Osasuna ranked ninth with 44 points. With 13 points above the dangerous group, coach Jagoba Arrasate’s team was relegated. On May 6, they can win the title if they beat Real in the final of the King’s Cup.