Barcelona started with Messi, Suarez and Griezmann at the front, whereas Busquets, Arthur and Vidal started at the midfield.
Lionel Messi remains on 699 career goals in all competitions after today’s match, despite going close himself on two separate occasions in the closing stages. He was close when he cut in and curled wide, before again missing the target from Ansu Fati’s pass.
Barcelona vs Athletic – Goal
Racitic scored the all important goal from Lionel Messi’s pass at 71 minute of the match. Rakitic, came as a substitute for Busquets and scored his first goal of the season. It was a 15th La Liga assist of the season for Messi.
Barcelona, as a team, were far from their best but they did somehow manage to victory. With Real Madrid having a better head-to-head record, Barca need their rivals to slip up even if they win every remaining game.
Athletic Bilbao who are struggling at 10th spot, had beaten the Catalans twice this season – first, on the opening day of La Liga, and second, in the Copa del Rey quarter-final. They had a lacklustre performance today and failed to test Barca goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
As Real Madrid are sitting at second spot with a match less played, they can go to the top of La Liga table if they beat Mallorca on Wednesday.
1-ter Stegen, 2-Nélson Semedo, 3-Piqué, 15-Lenglet, 18-Alba, 8-Arthur, (Puig 56′), 5-Busquets <Booked at 32> (Rakitic 64′ <Booked at 90>), 22-Vidal, 10-Messi, 9-Suárez (Braithwaite 85′), 17-Griezmann (Fati 65′)
4-Rakitic, 13-Murara Neto, 19-Braithwaite, 23-Umtiti, 24-Firpo, 26-Peña, 28-Puig, 30-Collado, 31-Fati, 33-Araújo, 42-Rodríguez Jiménez, 43-Cuenca
1-Simón, 18-De Marcos, 3-Núñez <Booked at 62>, 5-Álvarez, 24-Balenziaga, 8-López (García Carrillo 57′), 16-Vesga, 15-Lekue (Capa 69′), 34-Sancet (García 78′), 11-Córdoba (Muniain 57′), 9-Williams (Villalibre 69′)
4-Martínez, 6-San José, 10-Muniain, 12-Larrazabal, 13-Herrerín, 14-García Carrillo, 21-Capa, 22-García, 23-Kodro, 25-Villalibre, 27-Vencedor, 29-Vivian