Barcelona squandered a fantastic opportunity to expand their advantage at the top of La Liga on Sunday, falling 1-0 to lowly Almeria thanks to a superb first-half strike by El Bilal Toure. Barcelona leads the league with 59 points, seven more than Real Madrid, who were held to a 1-1 draw at home by Atletico Madrid on Saturday.
Almeria are 15th in the table with 25 points, two points clear of the relegation zone. Almeria ended Barcelona’s seven-game winning streak in the league and dealt another blow to the Catalans, who had gone unbeaten in 18 matches in all competitions before being eliminated from the Europa League on Thursday.
Leaders Barca stunned by lowly Almeria
Barcelona faces Real Madrid in the first leg of a Clasico Copa del Rey semi-final on Thursday at the Santiago Bernabeu, with their flaws beginning to emerge. In other news, Jorge Sampaoli’s Sevilla rallied from behind twice but lost 3-2 at home to Osasuna, dropping them to 14th and two points above the relegation zone.
Osasuna improved to seventh place and has a Copa del Rey semi-final against Athletic Bilbao on Wednesday. Girona defeated Athletic 3-2 in an entertaining game. Bilbao will rise to mid-table thanks to the electric Aleix Garcia.
“I’m very angry because I think we made the worst game of the season by far,” Barcelona manager Xavi Hernandez told Movistar Plus. We were not good and wasted a great opportunity in a match we could not afford to lose after what happened to Real Madrid. It was a golden opportunity today and it ended with a really bad day for us. No excuses, it was the worst showing of our side in the entire season.”