Xavi praises Barcelona star
The Catalan giants are three points clear at the top of the LaLiga standings after their victory in Madrid against Atlético.
Barcelona were looking to grab their first three points in LaLiga this year and finally managed to win against Atlético Madrid at Wanda Metropolitano.
It was a hard-fought win in a tense match where both teams ended up playing with 10 players, but the Catalan giants sealed a critical 0-1 victory in one of the most challenging venues in the Spanish league.
Els Blaugranes are now leading the standings with three more points than Real Madrid, who lost their second game in the competition against Villarreal at Estadio de la Cerámica (2-1).
“We had a lot at stake knowing that Real Madrid had lost”, Barcelona coach Xavi Hernández said after the game.
Ousmane Dembélé proved to be a key player capable of making a difference when playing well, as his goal gave Barça the three points.
Xavi’s ‘life insurance’
Before the start of the season, Xavi spoke about how important a player like Dembéle was for his plans and the truth is the French international has become a reference in Barcelona’s offensive line.
The team has never lost an official match when Ousmane has scored. He has found the back of the net on 36 occasions, with a balance of 30 wins and six draws.
However, there’s a player whose performance has been crucial, proving why he’s one of Barça’s most valuable stars.
Ronald Araújo returned from injury in midweek against Intercity in Copa del Rey action and made his first LaLiga start since September.
The Uruguayan central defender recorded a good performance in Barcelona’s win in Alicante last week and also in Madrid with his goal-line clearance in stoppage time at Wanda Metropolitano.
“He is a leader. He has been perfect, like Koundé, Christensen, and Balde”, Xavi added.
Araújo’s recovery is a big boost for Barcelona’s chances of fighting for the titles this season, becoming essential in Xavi’s starting XI.
The Spanish Supercup is the most immediate title to be played for Els Culers, who will be facing Betis on Thursday, while Real Madrid and Valencia will be playing the other semifinal game on Wednesday.
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