Barcelona slip-up in Sevilla stalemate
Sevilla FC 0-0 FC Barcelona: Laliga live
Only on Sunday night will FC Barcelona realise if the 0-0 draw in Seville was one point gained or two dropped as Real Madrid are now presented with a golden opportunity to top the LaLiga table with a win in San Sebastian.
A decent game in the Andalusian capital with 0-0 scoreline was possibly a fair result with the Catalan side enjoying the better chances of a first half they controlled with Sevilla the better side in the second 45.
In a flash interview post game, defender Gerard Pique acknowledged that the league title was now 'very difficult' as the stalemate puts the ball in Real Madrid's court with the side from the capital now depending on their own fate in the race for the 2019/20 title race.
Gonzalez Gonzalez calls time on the action. Sunday will reveal if this is one point gained or two lost as Real Madrid travel to San Sebastian for a crucial game against Real Sociedad.
Barcelona moving the ball from side to side patiently and win a last gasp corner. Messi to take as Ter Stegen goes up too.
Barça win a free-kick with the flag up for an offside. Does feel that we're heading towards a 0-0.
With this point Barcelona will move to three clear at the LaLiga summit. A Real Madrid win on Sunday in San Sebastian would see Zidane's men top the table having the better head-to-head.
5 of added time as Reguilon is in front of the Barcelona goal alone and fires the ball straight at the German stopper. A big chance for the home side.
Time up here in Seville with the fourth official poised to announce how much added time we'll have.
Play held up as Lenglet collides with En Nesyri and needs medical attention.
Rakitic off with Puig on.
Suarez goes close driving over on the half volley after patient build-up play from the Catalan side.
Barcelona win their 8th corner of the night. Sevilla sitting deeper now and hitting Barcelona on the break.
Still no way past Vaclik as Griezmann and Messi combine. Puig ready to enter the action.
Ocamos off/ Vazquez on for Sevilla
Ocampos breaks into the area, drifts past Seemed but fails to trouble Ter Stegen from an acute angle.
Messi drills in a shot/cross that drifts just past the Sevilla post.
Ten minutes for someone to find a breakthrough. A draw does feel like the 'right' score line to be fair.
It is indeed Vidal who comes off. Barcelona corner, Messi floats the ball over and out for yet another Barça corner which is hit straight into Vaclik's hands.
Griezmann about to come on with Vidal it would appear set to make way for the French striker.
What a great chance for Sevilla as Navas misplaces his pass with two striker ready to pounce in a lightning counter. The game has found its tempo again as we pause for a water break.
Barcelona win their fourth corner of the night but Sevilla clear the danger.
Messi clipped by Fernando and once again the Catalan side presented with a dangerous free-kick. 25m from the Seville goal.... Messi over the ball with four in the wall. Messi strikes and Vaclik tips over. Great stop from the Czech stopper.
20' to go in Seville. Who will break the deadlock ? Barcelona enjoyed the better of the first 45' but the home side have offered more threat in this half. Setien with changes to make.
De Jong off and En Nesyri. Gudelj also on with Jordan making way.
Very much a case of chalk and cheese compared to the pace and intensity at the start of this game as tiredness appear to be taking its toll on the action.
Youssef En-Nesyri poised to enter the action for Sevilla.
What an assist from Banega as he rifles the ball cross field and picks out Ocampos. He then proceeds to foul Rakitic....
Arthur on for Braithwaite, first Barcelona switch
Banega carded for a late challenge
Possession stats on the hour mark reveal Barcelona still ahead but the second half has certainly seen the home side trouble the Barcelona goal with the German stopper much the busier of the two goalkeepers.
Munir makes way for Suso, second change for the home side.
Vaclik yet to be called into service as once again the action is at the other end with Sevilla knocking on the door as once again Ter Stegen forced into action stopping well from Munir.
Great strike from Ocampos with Ter Stegen forced into a quick reflex stop palming the ball away. Seville piling on the pressure now in this beautifully poised contest.
Ocampos breaks into the Barça area and after a few shimmy, loses the ball. Not a night to remember for the Argentine (so far). Griezmann warming up for the visitors.
An optimistic effort from Banega as the Argentine looks to surprise Ter Stegen but rifles the ball high into the Seville night.
Sevilla almost combine with Munir's effort being intercepted by Pique. Banega already involved in the thick of the action and looking to linkup with Jordan in the centre of the park for Lopetegui's side.
The home side re-start the action.
Banega on for Torres at the break.
The players are in the tunnel as we await the signal from the referee to return to the pitch.
Regarding the LaLiga title and the run-in for rivals Real Madrid.... Zidane's men travel to San Sebastian on Sunday, then play: Mallorca (at home), Espanyol (a), Getafe (h), Athletic (a), Alaves (h), Granada (a), Villarreal (h) and Leganes at Butarque. The trips to Bilbao and Sunday's game in Donosti certainly look like the toughest trips.
Leo Messi is just one goal away from his 700th LaLiga goal tonight ! Will the Sanchez Pizjuan be the setting for this milestone ?
The presidential box tonight at the Sanchez Pizjuan with representatives from both sides with their respective club face masks.
The whistle sounds just as tempers were fraying here at the Sanchez Pizjuan. Excellent opening with the game tailing off ever so slightly as the action wore on.
Dangerous free-kick for Barcelona as Suarez is fouled by Kounde. A melee breaks out with Diego Carlos and Messi tangling. Did Messi push the Brazilian ? Card out.... it's for Busquets and it would appear Fernando is also carded.
De Jong breaks but is caught marginally offside.
Messi tries to wriggle his way past five white shirts but ultimately is crowded out. Both managers will be happy with their sides respective work effort in the first 45 minutes and an intriguing second half awaits. 3' of time will be added on.
The tempo of the action has dipped ever so slightly which is understandable given the frantic nature of the opening 20/25 minutes and the 25C/77F temperature in the Andalusian capital.
Into the final five minutes we go with Sevilla now bossing the action but having to contend with a resolute Barcelona rear-guard.
The Barça pressing is highly impressive tonight with the men in white not being able to enjoy any time on the ball.
Pique carded for a late challenge on Munir.
Nodded away by the men in burgundy and navy, another corner for Sevilla. Jordan again and this time easier for the defence to deal with. Better spell from the home side now.
Sevilla win their first corner of the night after good work from Navas. Jordan to take...
Rakitic goes down in the area and looks for a spot kick. Nothing doing for Gonzalez Gonzalez which would appear to be the correct decision.
Sevilla have only really threatened the Barcelona goal on one occasion via the Kounde effort but it's the Catalan side who look the more likely to break the deadlock. Messi and Rakitic looking sharp and to be honest, we've seen nothing from Ocampos.
A shame that there isn't 50,000 fans present to witness this man in action.
The game is being played in a frantic tempo. No sign of any Covid rustiness with great energy levels being displayed from both sides.
Reguilon fouls free flowing Messi and is the first name in the book tonight....
Tomáš Vaclík spills a Suarez volley and Sevilla manage to scramble the ball away. The clearance falls to Rakitic and the Croat fires wide. Barcelona forcing the issue now and looking the likelier side to break the deadlock.
Barcelona win another free-kick and despite being further out, Messi has a pop. Easier this one with Tomáš Vaclík equal to the Argentine's effort.
it was actually Kounde who deflected the Messi free kick. Fine defending from the Sevilla No. 12. as he nodded the ball over the bar.
The Argentine strikes and forces Vaclik to tip over the bar. Great strike but possible lacking a little more zip. Great shot and equally fine save.
Messi fouled on the edge off the area.... Messi territory.... ideal for the trusty left foot. 22m out.
A round of applause for the memory of former Seville player Antonio Puerta.
Athletic Club, Celta, At. Madrid, Villarreal, Espanyol, Valladolid, Osasuna, Alaves .... remaining sides that Barcelona have to face in the outstanding fixtures in this 2019/20 season.
Barça free kick which Messi takes but fails to hit a team-mate with the Sevilla rear-guard dealing adeptly with the attack.
Incredible stat: Leo Messi has played against Sevilla on 38 occasions in the Barcelona shirt bagging 37 goals in the process. Can he add to this impressive tally tonight ?
Sevilla go close, Kounde drives a right footed rasper which goes inches wide of the Barcelona goal.
Ocampos again..... fires a long range pass cross field and the ball drifts out of play .... The Argentine obviously feeling the pressure of the earlier comment praising his season so far ; )
Can Barcelona make it 3/3 wins during the restart? Only Real Madrid and Villarreal have 100% win records since we resumed activity. Villarreal winning earlier tonight at in-form Granada.
Barcelona enjoying the better of the opening minutes but still neither keeper called into action.
Great gesture from Sevilla with a message of support for former Barcelona assistant Unzue who has been diagnosed with motor neurone disease
Just as I say that, Ocampos fluffs a pass knocking the ball out for a throw in....
Looking forward to seeing Lucas Ocampos in action tonight with the Argentine striker certainly one of the revelation for Sevilla this season. Brighter start for the visitors as Messi forces a corner.
Pre-game team huddle from Barça players....
Off we go in Seville, the Catalan side get us underway.
Sevilla in their classic all white with black socks and white shorts, Barcelona in their navy and burgundy checked shirts, blue shorts and Gonzalez Gonzalez the man in the middle tonight.
The sides take to the pitch at an empty Sanchez Pizjuan. Sevilla with the same side who faced Betis in the LaLiga return game just over a week. 5 changes for Barcelona from the side who saw off Leganes earlier this week.
Both Vidal and Suarez will need to watch their step tonight with both players just one card away from a suspension. The same applies to Sevilla captain Jesus Navas.
and the Sevilla XI:
Reminder: FC Barcelona side for the clash
- 1 Ter Stegen
- 18 Alba
- 15 Clement Lenglet
- 3 Piqué
- 2 Nelson Semedo
- 4 Rakitic
- 22 Vidal
- 5 Busquets
- 9 Luis Suárez
- 19 Braithwaite
- 10 Messi
This is how the top of LaLiga looks ahead of tonight's game
Added pressure on the Catalan side tonight following Real Madrid's 3-0 win over Valencia. This trip to the Andalusian capital is potentially one of the 'banana skins' ahead for Setien's side with eight games remaining after tonight's fixture. Next up for Barça is a home tie vs. Athletic with Real Madrid facing a tricky trip to San Sebastian next Sunday followed by Mallorca at home on match-day 31.
Ideal conditions this evening with a very mild 26C/78F in the Andalusian capital. We'll have water breaks in minutes 30 and 75 with both sides permitted to make five substitutes during the match.
Barcelona have looked solid since the return of LaLiga action bagging six goals in two games and yet to concede since the restart.
Lopetegui's men have bagged 4 points since the resumption of the campaign and look poised to secure one of the four available 2020/21 Champions League places.
The last time both sides met here in Seville, the Catalan side ran out 2-4 winners. Argentine striker Lionel Messi on hand that evening bagging a triple with Suarez grabbing a fourth in added time. Navas and Mercado were on target for the home side on the February evening.
The iconic mosaic facade outside the Sanchez Pizjuan stadium bathed in the late summer sun as kick-of looms in the Andalusian capital.
Barcelona head coach Quique Setien opting for an attacking trident of Suarez, Messi and Braithwaite with French striker Antoine Griezmann resigned to the substitutes bench.
The action gets underway at the Estadio Sanchez Pizjuan at 22:00.
A very warm welcome to our live coverage as third place Sevilla face table topping FC Barcelona in a hugely attractive fixture in the Andalusian capital tonight.