Barcelona end 2019 unbeaten at home in LaLiga
Goals from Griezmann, Vidal, Messi and Luis Suárez handed Barça victory over Alavés to ensure a full calendar year without defeat at Camp Nou.
Barcelona’s 4-1 victory over Alavés in Camp Nou on Saturday sealed an unbeaten calendar year in LaLiga at the reigning champion’s home stadium. Ernesto Valverde’s side recorded 18 games without defeat between 13 January (a 3-0 victory over Eibar) and 21 December while only dropping four points during that run, in a 2-2 draw with Valencia on 2 February and the midweek Clásico stalemate against Real Madrid on 18 December.
In total, Valverde’s side scored 49 goals during that time, while conceding just 14. Leo Messi also reached 50 goals in a calendar year six years in a row with his strike against El Glorioso.
Out of a possible 54 points in 2019 Barcelona secured 50 on home turf as they won the 2018-19 Liga title and their home form this season has maintained their defence of the championship after several slip-ups away from home, including a run of three away games at the start of the current season that reaped just a single point (0-1 at Athletic Bilbao, 2-2 at Osasuna and 0-2 at Granada) added to a loss at Levante and last weekend’s 2-2 draw at Barça’s bogey ground Anoeta, where Real Sociedad until recently held the most impressive home record of any Liga side against the Catalan club.
Barça edge ahead of Real Madrid in title race
In between 2007 and 2018 Barça failed to beat Real Sociedad away in seven attempts (the Basque side spent three seasons from 2007-08 to 2009-10 in Segunda) with the home side victorious on five occasions during that period.
Saturday’s win took Valverde’s side to 39 points in LaLiga, three ahead of their nearest challengers Real Madrid, who welcome Athletic to the Bernabéu on Sunday, a stadium that does for the Lions what Anoeta did for so long to Barcelona. The last time Athletic tasted victory on Madrid’s home turf was February 2005. Since then, in 14 fixtures at the Bernabéu, Athletic have picked up a single point in a 1-1 draw last season.
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