Valverde: Barcelona had to suffer at Eibar

Gerard Pique

It was not a comfortable afternoon for Ernesto Valverde's men on a rainy day in the Basque Country, but Barca are still unbeaten 24 games into the league campaign, and have now gone 31 La Liga matches undefeated in total to match their record run under Pep Guardiola in 2010/11.

Chelsea face the Catalan giants in the first leg of their round of 16 Champions League tie on Tuesday, and speaking ahead of the game Pedro has claimed that the game will be extra special for him as he comes up against his old team, as reported by Goal.

Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez still stood out, the Argentine picking out the Uruguayan for the opening goal in the first half - his 22nd assist for his fellow South American forward.

"It was a very hard match just as we expected, and we will try and make sure it helps us, although the Champions League is another competition altogether". We have to try to have the ideal game and to try to make the best decisions also for this type of team.

Orellana hit the crossbar from outside the box moments after Suarez rounded keeper Marko Dmitrovic to score the opener, and Messi hit the post in the second half from Suarez's lay-off. "It's two matches. We will go there to win, but we know they will put pressure on us", Alba added.

Philippe Coutinho entered the match for Andres Iniesta in the 63rd minute, but Eibar's courageous performance was killed by their own hand in the 66th.

It was only when Orellana was later sent off for a second yellow card that Barcelona were able to kill off the game, Jordi Alba wrapping up the win in the 88th minute.

Earlier Saturday, Sevilla warmed up for their Champions League clash with Manchester United by winning 2-1 at Las Palmas, although it was aided by a controversial late offside call.

The home team pulled a goal back through Jonathan Calleri's converted penalty and Sevilla enjoyed a huge slice of fortune when Alejandro Galvez scored for Las Palmas in injury time but his chipped goal was incorrectly ruled offside. Deportivo remain second-bottom of the standings on 17 points while Alaves move 10 clear of the relegation zone.

Samuel Umtiti was suspended for the game against Getafe, but the France defender is back for this one and Valverde has no other players banned this weekend.

Valverde has had the whole week to prepare for Eibar with Barcelona having not played a midweek game for the first time in 2018.



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