Barcelona closed into the La Liga leaders Real Madrid, with a 1-0 win against Real Valladolid at José Zorrilla stadium.
Barca manager Quique Setien surprisingly omitted Luis Suarez from his starting eleven in favour of 20-year-old midfielder Riqui Puig and kept Vidal at front. However, he brought in Suarez after the break, in place of Griezmann. Ansu Fati could not find a place in the matchday team after he was shown the red card in the last outing.
Arturo Vidal scored the only goal for the visitors, with a low and hard attempt in the left corner from Lionel Messi’s pass.
The hosts had their share of chances to level but were held by poor finishing and Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
Had Barcelona lost point/s, Los Blancos would have had the opportunity to clinch the title in their next match. With a win As it stands, Real are a point clear with a match less than their rival. As they hold better head-to-head record against.
And while Barcelona started forcefully, and dominated possession, they could not keep the pace throughout.
The Argentinian captain did not have an eventful day today, but he became first La Liga player after Xavi, in 2008-09 to provide 20 assists in a season. With few matches in hand, he clearly has the
Real Madrid, having played one match less, are travelling to Granada for their next match on Monday. They will have a chance to secure 4 points lead once again to seal the title.
Masip, Moyano, Javi Sanchez, Olivas, Joaquin (Hervias, 46), Raul Carnero (Nacho, 25), San Emeterio, Alcaraz (Enes Unal, 46), Kike Perez, Oscar Plano (Waldo, 80), Sergi Guardiola (Sandro, 61).
Ter Stegen, Jordi Alba, Pique, Lenglet (Araujo, 57), Semedo, Busquets (Junior Firpo, 74), Sergi Roberto, Riqui Puig (Rakitic, 57), Vidal, Messi, Griezmann (Suarez, 46)