Barcelona battle back for 4-4 draw at Villarreal


Lionel Messi came off the bench to attain his sixth La Liga free-kick of the season

La Liga leaders Barcelona scored two tiresome desires to design 4-4 with Villarreal in a grand sport.

The champions led 2-0 by Philippe Coutinho and Malcom.

Nonetheless Villarreal then led 4-2 with Samuel Chukwueze, Karl Toko Ekambi, Vicente Iborra and Carlos Bacca scoring.

The struggling hosts had Alvaro Gonzalez despatched off and Barca took earnings with change Lionel Messi’s ninetieth-minute free-kick and Luis Suarez’s damage-time equaliser.

Barca are eight aspects sure of second-positioned Atletico Madrid going into Saturday’s meeting on the Nou Camp.

Act I: Barcelona up to speed

Barca named Messi, Gerard Pique and Ivan Rakitic on the bench sooner than games against Atletico Madrid and Manchester United – and it appeared a gleaming decision as they raced into an early lead.

Suarez had two efforts saved – at the side of one from the midway line – by the purpose they took the lead.

Malcom, making handiest his second La Liga start, unselfishly squared the ball for Coutinho to tap dwelling a shut-vary opener. And the summer signing from Bordeaux doubled the safe four minutes later with a header from Arturo Vidal’s gruesome.

At that stage it appeared as if they were going to blow Villarreal away with Coutinho hitting the post when he clipped the ball over Sergio Asenjo. The Brazilian then had an effort saved by the goalkeeper from 25 yards out.

Act II: Villarreal mount astonishing comeback

Villarreal started the day handiest one point above the relegation zone nevertheless appeared love world beaters from the second Nigerian child Samuel Chukwueze ran on to a lengthy ball ahead and hit the post sooner than slamming the rebound dwelling.

The Catalans would possibly perhaps presumably no longer address the coast of Chukwueze and Ekambi all by and that combination introduced their second-half of equaliser.

Ekambi did smartly to care for Chukwueze’s ball in play down the dazzling hover. And with keeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen off his line gazing for a gruesome, the Cameroon global by some means beat him at his advance post from an nearly impossible angle advance the byeline.

The Estadio de la Ceramica used to be rocking at this point and got even louder when Iborra put them into a scarcely believable lead.

The old new Leicester City man ran on to a by-ball from Manuel Morlanes sooner than poking the ball past the onrushing Ter Stegen.

They pushed and pushed for added desires and Chukwueze used to be unfortunate now to no longer receive his second when his deflected effort from advance the perimeter of the box used to be tipped on to the bar by Barca’s German keeper.

Fair number four came when Santi Cazorla, who used to be majestic in midfield, played a brilliant circulation from his beget half of to change Bacca, who held his nerve to head round Ter Stegen and shoot past Samuel Umtiti on the line.

At that stage Barcelona were shaken and with Messi booked for dissent, their sixth yellow card of the game, a frustrating sport looked as if it would be coming to an halt.

Act III: Crimson card gives Barca lifeline

Every thing modified when Villarreal defender Gonzalez used to be proven a second yellow card for a petulant substandard on Suarez from within the serve of.

They’d to make a commerce in a thunder to shore issues up, with old college Italian defender Daniele Bonera approaching for Chukwueze. The 37-twelve months-passe would no longer touch the ball in his six minutes on the pitch.

Victor Ruiz will rue his decision to substandard Messi on the perimeter of the box because the Argentine stepped up to curl dwelling a free-kick off the within the far post with 12 seconds of unparalleled time last.

The Catalans went all out for an equaliser which came with the final kick of the game. A nook used to be half of-cleared to Suarez, who hit a fair trusty looking 20-yard effort on the leap that flew past Asenjo and broke Yellow Submarine hearts.

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