Barcelona’s manager Xavi’s claims that the team was not under any crisis whatsoever, 24 hours before the home clash against Alaves, was fully justified when the Blaugrana came from behind to beat the stubborn visitors on Sunday in their latest La Liga match.
Barcelona needed a brace from Robert Lewandowski to secure a victory after the visitors took the lead within the first minutes of kick-off. The Catalan giants and La Liga champions had gone their last three games in all competitions before the fixture with a win and two losses, while Poland striker Robert Lewandowski was also on a six-game goalless streak and also missed additional three games due to injury.
After bouncing back from the El Clasico loss to Real Madrid with a win against Real Sociedad in La Liga last weekend, Barcelona fell to a shocking defeat to Shakhtar Donetsk in Germany in the UEFA Champions League at midweek and therefore there was a need for victory for the La Liga champions
However, Alaves didn’t read the script as they took a shock lead right from kick-off as youngster Samu Omorodion slotted past Marc-Andre Ter Stergen in goal for Barcelona. The 19-year-old had more than two opportunities to put Alaves ahead before half-time but couldn’t hit the target.
Barcelona were given the route back to victory after halftime as Robert Lewandowski scored his first goal since September with a well-placed header that beat Alaves’ goalkeeper in the 53rd minute.
The last time Lewandowski scored was a brace in the 3-2 victory over Celta Vigo in La Liga in September, and he ensured that he replicated the brace with a penalty 12 minutes before the end of the game to earn the victory for Barcelona.
The win puts Barcelona in third position with 30 points, two points behind second-placed Real Madrid, and four behind surprise League leaders Girona, who are at the top of the table with 34 points. Real Madrid got a huge 5-1 over Valencia on Saturday.
Daniel Ademiju Idowu