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Barcelona-Celta Vigo 2017/18 LaLiga: match report, goals, action

Sevilla - Barcelona: Copa del Rey quarter-final

BARCELONA, SPAIN - DECEMBER 02:  Paulinho of FC Barcelona reacts during the La Liga match between FC Barcelona and Celta de Vigo at Camp Nou on December 2, 2017 in Barcelona, Spain.  (Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images)
Alex CaparrosGetty Images

Barcelona 2-2 Celta Vigo: match report

Barcelona dropped points for the second consecutive week as Celta Vigo came to the Camp Nou and leave with a point earned as daylight between Barcelona and the rest continues to fade.

On Juan Carlos Unzué's return to the Camp Nou where he once worked alongside Luis Enrique, he seemed to know exactly when and where to press Barcelona to hurt them the most. Despite Valverde's side lop-sided possession percentage, Celta Vigo were a constant threat as they countered with purpose.

They took the lead on 20 minutes as Iago Aspas jumped the offside trap and squared to Maxi Gomez, who saw his shot saved by Ter Stegen. Aspas, who had followed the play, tapped home as the Camp Nou was stunned.

That lead only lasted two minutes, however, as Lionel Messi sprung to life and slid under Ruben Blanco after a flowing move involving all of Barcelona's attacking players.

Barcelona seemed to be out of ideas as the second half wore on and as Celta continued to look dangerous on the break. It would take a Messi moment to break the deadlock yet again as he played a perfect pass to Alba, who squared to Suárez as both Messi and Suárez got on the score sheet for the same time in a game since September.

Celta kept their cool, however, and stuck to their gameplan. They had their reward when Iago Aspas, the protagonist yet again, broke free down the right and played it back to Maxi Goméz. The big striker made no mistake this time as he waited for the right time to pull the trigger and pull Celta Vigo level.

Barca, who looked sluggish throughout, continued to knock on the door but it never opened and Celta continued to do their own knocking up the other end of the field. The game ended with Barca frustrated and Celta realising how important a point that might just be after an impressive performance.

Barcelona vs Celta Vigo live stream online: as it happened

Barcelona vs Celta Vigo: LaLiga match preview

Barcelona and Celta Vigo get Saturday's LaLiga action underway in a match that has brought plenty of goals in the past couple of years, albeit mainly for the Blaugrana.

It's a game that sees Celta coach Juan Carlos Unzué return to the club where he spent the last three seasons as assistant to Luis Enrique, Ernesto Valverde's predecessor as Barça boss, having also had a spell there as a player.


Barcelona dropped points for only the second time this season in last weekend's top-of-the-table draw at Valencia, a stalemate that kept the LaLiga leaders four points clear of Los Che.

At home, Barcelona's record in the top flight this term is still flawless, and immediate history would seem to point towards that 100% record remaining intact, given that their last two league meetings with Celta in Catalonia have seen the visitors thumped 5-0 and 6-1.

But it's worth noting that those thrashings are part of what is in fact something of a mixed bag of recent results between the two: indeed, Celta won 1-0 at the Camp Nou in 2014/15, while Barça have also been beaten two years running at Balaídos.

Lionel Messi is among a raft of first-team players to come back into the squad after being rested for the 5-0 Copa del Rey win over Real Murcia in midweek, which saw Barça ease through to the last 16 by an 8-0 aggregate scoreline.

Meanwhile, André Gomes returns from injury and Gerard Piqué is available in LaLiga once more after missing the Valencia clash through suspension, but Gerard Deulofeu and Nelson Semedo miss out and Arda Turan, Rafinha, Javier Mascherano and Ousmane Dembélé remain injured.

Celta Vigo

Appointed in the summer to the post that Unzué had himself been linked with, Valverde will be wary of the advantages that the "studious" Celta boss's inside knowledge may bring, admitting: "The fact he knows the team so well makes him dangerous."

As he looked ahead to his Camp Nou return, meanwhile, Unzué explained: "Perhaps the most special thing about it is the build-up to the game. The questions you [the media] ask, the memories that come to your mind...

"But that's as far as it goes," cautioned the 50-year-old, who coincided with his touchline counterpart as a Barça player. "When the game kicks off, I'll be like any other opponent."

Having replaced Eduardo Berizzo in the close-season, Unzué suffered a wobbly start at Celta, winning just one of his first five LaLiga games; however, four victories and two draws from the last nine have since lifted the men from the north west to the respectability of ninth.

The most recent of those league wins came last time out, with star man Iago Aspas' penalty handing the Galicians a narrow, 1-0 triumph over Leganés in Vigo.

And, like their hosts, Celta are also fresh from progressing in the Copa this week, after a 1-0 win at Balaídos saw them claim a 3-1 aggregate victory over Eibar.

Left-back Jonny Castro is suspended, and midfielder Andrew Hjulsager and third-choice keeper Iván Villar have been left out, but defender Sergi Gómez is fit for the visit to his former club after overcoming a calf strain.

Barcelona vs Celta Vigo live stream online: betting odds

Celta Vigo are not fancied to repeat their heroics of three seasons ago, with an away win valued at 16/1, and Barcelona priced at 1/7 to come out on top.

Place your bet on Barcelona vs Celta Vigo.


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