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Barcelona Are 12 Point Clear With El Clasico Win


(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – Barcelona moved 12 points clear of Real Madrid at the top of La Liga with only 12 games left to play thanks to a 92nd minute winner from Franck Kessie.

Real Madrid took the lead when Ronald Araujo headed past his own keeper but a goal in injury time of the first half from Sergio Roberto got them back on terms.

It looked as if Madrid had retaken the lead when Marco Asensio scored with practically his first touch after coming on but the goal was ruled out for offside.

And two minutes into added time Kessie, also off the bench, swept in the winner to send the Camp Nou into raptures.

It was the last league Clasico the old stadium will see and it was a fine way to go out in style – with a 2-1 win that surely will see Xavi win his first league title as a coach.

It was Barcelona’s 100th Clasico win but it did not start well. Araujo had been dubbed Kryptonite to Real Madrid Superman Vinicius in the build-up to the game but he was giving his jailer the runaround early on and when he crossed from the left it was the Uruguayan defender who headed past Marc Andre ter Stegen. 

Barcelona’s German keeper had only conceded one goal all season and that from the penalty spot. Now it was two and still no rival had scored against him in open play.

Barcelona scored at the worst possible time for Real Madrid and it was Sergio Roberto the player picked to replace the injured Pedri who got the goal. 

At the restart Madrid knew that they had to show more ambition because a draw was not going to be enough and they made their changes earlier with Asensio, Aurelien Tchouameni, and Dani Ceballos coming on.

Asensio only needed half a chance and his exquisite finish past Ter Stegen deserved to stand for its quality but he was marginally offside and after a lengthy delay it was chalked off.

The game looked to be petering out into a draw – that would have been bad enough for Real Madrid but worse was to come when Balde teed-up Kessie and he made no mistake.

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