Sevilla didn’t make things easy but Barcelona got the job done and beat the Andaluz side 3-0 to go eight points in front of Real Madrid in LaLiga.
Things started somewhat ominously for the Catalan side as only four minutes into the match, Sergio Busquets was forced off after his foot got caught in the pitch as he was vying for the ball and was replaced by Franck Kessie.
Barcelona dominated the first half albeit with only a handful of goal scoring opportunities. One of the clearest ones was from Robert Lewandowski who say his long-range effort saved by Bounou.
As the half progressed, Sevilla managed to keep more of the ball and were a bit more dangerous going forward, though little to trouble Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
Barcelona finally managed to open the score early in the second half.
Jordi Alba slotted his shot to Bounou’s far post following a sublime pass from Kessie. It was the left-back’s first goal of the season.
Contrast to some of their previous matches, Barcelona kept the pressure on and managed to score a second.
Raphinha — another player under the microscope — received the ball with space, made some more between him and the Sevilla defender and delivered a sublime pass of his own to Gavi who simply had to tap it in.
The cherry on top for the Brazilian came nine minutes later as he scored the third, connecting with a pass from Alba who had an outstanding performance himself.
As mentioned, it was an important win for Barcelona given Real Madrid’s loss to Mallorca. They knew they had a golden opportunity to make a statement in their race to win LaLiga and did so. Eight points ahead of Real Madrid gives Barça some breathing space at an opportune time in the season with fixtures in the Europa League and Copa del Rey set to come.