Barcelona beats Alavés without problems

VITORIA-, With goals from Robert Lewandowski, Ilkay Gundogan and Vitor Roque, Barcelona chained a second consecutive victory in the League by winning 3-1 on the field of the Alavés (12th), this Saturday in the 23rd matchday, and regains third position in the League.

Current champion, Barça (50 points) surpasses Atlético (4th with 47), which on Sunday plays the Spanish capital derby against Real Madrid (1st with 57).

The last member of this leading quartet, Girona (2nd, 55th), hosts Real Sociedad (6th) this Saturday.

In a solid match, the team led by Xavi opened the scoring thanks to a great maneuver by Lewandowski, who received from Gundogan, placed the ball and scored with a lob over the goalkeeper (23rd).

Already in the second half (49) a beautiful collective action was culminated by Gundogan with a volley. He received a measured pass from Pedri at the far post.

Right afterward, Alavés, who never lost face of the game, came close thanks to a header from the immense Samu Omorodion (50), but Vitor Roque, as soon as he entered the field (63) certified the victory with a precise shot hit by one of the posts.

The Brazilian, who had just arrived at Barcelona for 40 million euros ($43 million), was then sent off (73). In 14 minutes of play he had time to score and receive two yellow cards to return to the locker room.

Christensen, muscle in the middle

The players led by Saturday.

“Winning is always positive. After the decision comes two victories, yes. Here is the team’s reaction. They have had their chances. We have been very effective, something we were lacking during the season,” summarized the coach

Xavi reinforced his midfield by adding Danish centre-back Andreas Christensen to the trio of Pedri, Gundogan and Frenkie De Jong.

Among the recovered players, Lewandowski, who scored his first goal in the League since December, and Gundogan, with his ninth decisive pass in all competitions.

Christensen’s presence as a defensive midfielder allowed the former Manchester City captain and De Jong to play further forward, bringing their quality to the visitors’ box.

But despite his good color, the patient is not yet cured, and Barça’s defensive failures were once again evident, with goalkeeper Iñaki Peña saving his team against Jon Guridi (36) and Álex Sola (45+1).

‘Tigrinho’, goal and express expulsion

The other big news about Xavi is ‘Tigrinho’, 18 years old, who already offered victory to his team against Osasuna and who is quickly gaining points. But his lack of craftsmanship cost him a ‘silly’ expulsion for a hit and a late tackle, actions punished with yellow cards.

Already deprived of eight players and with several youth players entering the rotation, Xavi retired Pedri (75), who quickly put an ice bag on his right thigh.

The Spanish coach already vehemently criticized this week a “criminal” schedule that has led Barça to play nine games in a month.