(Photo credit score: @LaLigaEN Twitter deal with)
MADRID: Lionel Messi scored his 700th profession goal but Barcelona suffered one other blow to their La Liga title hopes after a 2-2 draw with Atletico Madrid on Tuesday.
Messi chipped in a penalty to achieve one other astonishing milestone at Camp Nou but twice Atletico hit again with spot-kicks of their very own, Saul Niguez changing each after Barca took an early lead by means of Diego Costa’s personal goal.
The outcome offers Real Madrid the possibility to maneuver 4 factors clear on the high of the desk if they’ll overcome Getafe at residence on Wednesday, a formidable lead with 5 video games left.
Atletico keep third, two factors forward of Sevilla, who received 3-Zero at Leganes.
With a superior head-to-head, it might take a dramatic capitulation for Real Madrid to not elevate the trophy from right here but there is no such thing as a assure Barcelona can end strongly sufficient even to create stress.
This was their third draw in 4 matches and with recommendations of disharmony between the gamers and training employees, the way forward for coach Quique Setien appears bleak too.
“From the dressing room I feel supported, yes,” he stated. “And regarding the meeting with the board, I will not say what was said in that.”
Setien was additionally requested about his job on Monday and needed to play down the importance of a frank change of views within the dressing room following Saturday’s draw at Celta Vigo.
Messi had additionally prompted a stir by showing to disregard Setien’s assistant Eder Sarabia throughout a water break at Vigo and on Tuesday it was unattainable to disregard the distinction with Atletico’s gamers, who huddled round Diego Simeone whereas 50 metres away Setien stood alone.
At full-time, Setien stared into house with the look of a coach that’s operating out of time but he had taken daring selections, leaving 120-million-euro signing Antoine Griezmann on the bench and handing one other begin to 20-year-old Riqui Puig.
“It’s true that taking him out of the team like that is hard for a player of his level but the circumstances forced me to do it,” stated Setien of Griezmann. “Tomorrow I will speak to him, not to apologise, but it is a decision he has to understand.”
Yet it began properly for them as Costa endured a nightmare first quarter of an hour, first diverting Messi’s nook into his personal web after misjudging the flight of the ball on the close to submit.
Then he missed a penalty, received after the wonderful Yannick Carrasco left Gerard Pique for lifeless after which in the reduction of inside Arturo Vidal, who caught out a leg.
Costa’s shot was saved but VAR confirmed Marc-Andre ter Stegen had sprung off his line too early and Atletico got a second likelihood. This time Saul took the ball and he scored the equaliser.
Messi dinked over the sliding Renan Lodi after which whistled a curling effort previous the far submit. His deflected free-kick pressured Jan Oblak to regulate his ft and palm over.
Finally, it was laid on a plate for him shortly after half-time. Felipe clipped Nelson Semedo and Messi, with the 700th in sight, chipped the ball delicately down the center.
But each time Barca pulled away, Atletico pegged them again. Another penalty was awarded, once more instigated by the speedy Carrasco, who made the many of the slightest contact from Semedo.
Saul took accountability once more and whereas Ter Stegen acquired a hand to it, the ball squirmed into the nook.
Vidal twice went shut, the second time heading broad Jordi Alba’s cross, and Thomas Lemar may even have received it for Atletico in injury-time. For Barca, the draw was damaging sufficient.
Earlier, Sevilla’s Oliver Torres scored twice and Munir El Haddadi added a 3rd to see off Leganes and increase their hopes of holding onto fourth place.
Sevilla sit 5 factors forward of Getafe, having performed a sport extra. Leganes keep 19th, 9 factors adrift of security.