Wednesday, May 24, 2023
Real Valladolid pulled off a remarkable 3-1 upset against Barcelona at home, propelling them out of the relegation zone in LaLiga.
Andreas Christensen's own goal in the second minute set the tone, followed by Cyle Larin's successful penalty kick and Gonzalo Plata's clinical finish on the break. Barcelona's Robert Lewandowski managed a consolation goal, but it wasn't enough to salvage a result.
During the match, Barcelona winger Raphinha displayed a message of support for his compatriot Vinicius Junior, who had been racially abused by Valencia fans. Raphinha's gesture received praise from Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong, who emphasized the need to combat racism.
Before the game, both teams held up a banner reading "racists out of football," aligning with LaLiga and the Spanish football federation's initiative to address racial abuse in the sport.
Barcelona's young playmaker, Pablo Torre, made his first LaLiga start and showed promise. However, the team as a whole appeared sluggish, resulting in their second consecutive defeat.
Goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen remains in pursuit of the LaLiga clean sheet record, with 25 clean sheets to his name and two matches remaining.
Real Valladolid's victory proved crucial in their battle for LaLiga survival, lifting them above Getafe and into 17th place. Meanwhile, Barcelona, already crowned champions, continue their search for a league win.
Valladolid's win was aided by the impressive performance of goalkeeper Masip, who made crucial saves to deny Barcelona in the first half.
Looking ahead, Valladolid faces a crucial match against Almeria, while Barcelona hosts Mallorca in their respective upcoming LaLiga fixtures.