Spanish La Liga
Barcelona3Real Sociedad2

Barcelona 3-2 Real Sociedad

Lionel Messi
All the goals came in the first half of an entertaining game

Lionel Messi scored twice as below-par Barcelona laboured to a win over Real Sociedad to keep their La Liga title hopes alive.

The champions are three points below Real Madrid, who have a game in hand, going into El Clasico next weekend.

Messi fired Barca into the lead from 25 yards and scuffed home a second, his 498th goal for the club, before Samuel Umtiti's own goal gave La Real hope.

Paco Alcacer made it 3-1 before Xabi Prieto pulled one back.

Unlike a weakened Real Madrid, who beat Sporting Gijon by the same scoreline earlier in the day, Barca played a full-strength team.

Barcelona host Juventus on Wednesday in the Champions League quarter-final, having lost the first leg 3-0 in Italy.

But boss Luis Enrique decided he could not risk losing ground in the title race in order to keep his players fresh for that game.

Barca now go into a potentially season-defining week. After the Juventus match comes a trip to Madrid, where a win would send Enrique's side top on the head-to-head rule - although Real would still have an extra game to play.

All the goals at the Nou Camp were scored in the first half, with three coming in the five minutes before the break.

Barcelona, who were without the suspended Neymar, had to hang on for periods.

La Real's best chance to equalise came when Asier Illarramendi's ambitious 50-yard free-kick had to be tipped over by a back-pedalling Marc-Andre ter Stegen.

La Liga table

Line-ups

Barcelona

  • 1ter Stegen
  • 20Sergi
  • 3PiquéBooked at 88mins
  • 23Umtiti
  • 18Alba
  • 5Busquets
  • 21André GomesSubstituted forIniestaat 69'minutes
  • 4Rakitic
  • 10Messi
  • 17AlcácerBooked at 41minsSubstituted forD Suárezat 79'minutes
  • 9L SuárezBooked at 68mins

Substitutes

  • 6D Suárez
  • 8Iniesta
  • 13Cillessen
  • 19Digne
  • 24Mathieu
  • 28Aleñá
  • 39Cardona

Real Sociedad

  • 1Rulli
  • 20Zaldúa
  • 22Rodríguez Navas
  • 6Iñigo Martínez
  • 19Berchiche Izeta
  • 4IllarramendiBooked at 49mins
  • 17ZurutuzaSubstituted forGraneroat 84'minutes
  • 11VelaBooked at 7minsSubstituted forCanalesat 62'minutes
  • 10Xabi Prieto
  • 18Oyarzabal
  • 12Da SilvaSubstituted forBautistaat 79'minutes

Substitutes

  • 8Granero
  • 15Elustondo
  • 16Canales
  • 25Ramírez Martínez
  • 26Bautista
  • 27Zubeldia
  • 32Rodrigues
Referee:
Juan Martínez Munuera
Attendance:
81,704

Match Stats

Home TeamBarcelonaAway TeamReal Sociedad
Possession
Home53%
Away47%
Shots
Home16
Away14
Shots on Target
Home9
Away7
Corners
Home5
Away4
Fouls
Home15
Away17

Live Text

Match ends, Barcelona 3, Real Sociedad 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Barcelona 3, Real Sociedad 2.

Andrés Iniesta (Barcelona) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Asier Illarramendi (Real Sociedad).

Attempt saved. Luis Suárez (Barcelona) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt missed. Yuri (Real Sociedad) left footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Esteban Granero.

Offside, Barcelona. Ivan Rakitic tries a through ball, but Luis Suárez is caught offside.

Booking

Gerard Piqué (Barcelona) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Gerard Piqué (Barcelona).

Mikel Oyarzabal (Real Sociedad) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Attempt saved. Denis Suárez (Barcelona) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Luis Suárez.

Ivan Rakitic (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Esteban Granero (Real Sociedad).

Substitution

Substitution, Real Sociedad. Esteban Granero replaces David Zurutuza.

Andrés Iniesta (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Sergio Canales (Real Sociedad).

Attempt missed. Ivan Rakitic (Barcelona) left footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Andrés Iniesta following a corner.

Corner, Barcelona. Conceded by Yuri.

Corner, Barcelona. Conceded by Iñigo Martínez.

Attempt saved. Ivan Rakitic (Barcelona) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Lionel Messi.

Substitution

Substitution, Barcelona. Denis Suárez replaces Paco Alcácer.

Offside, Real Sociedad. Raúl Navas tries a through ball, but Jon Bautista is caught offside.

Substitution

Substitution, Real Sociedad. Jon Bautista replaces Willian José.

Andrés Iniesta (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Sergio Canales (Real Sociedad).

Corner, Barcelona. Conceded by Iñigo Martínez.

Andrés Iniesta (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Dangerous play by Raúl Navas (Real Sociedad).

Attempt missed. Iñigo Martínez (Real Sociedad) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Sergio Canales with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Real Sociedad. Conceded by Marc-André ter Stegen.

Attempt saved. Asier Illarramendi (Real Sociedad) right footed shot from more than 35 yards is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Foul by Andrés Iniesta (Barcelona).

Xabi Prieto (Real Sociedad) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Ivan Rakitic (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Raúl Navas (Real Sociedad).

Corner, Real Sociedad. Conceded by Gerard Piqué.

Substitution

Substitution, Barcelona. Andrés Iniesta replaces André Gomes.

Booking

Luis Suárez (Barcelona) is shown the yellow card.

Foul by Luis Suárez (Barcelona).

Raúl Navas (Real Sociedad) wins a free kick on the right wing.

goal

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Saturday 15th April 2017

View all Spanish La Liga results

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Real Madrid31236282334975
2Barcelona32226491306172
3Atl Madrid32198559243565
4Sevilla31187656391761
5Villarreal31159745242154
6Ath Bilbao32165114537853
7Real Sociedad32164124845352
8Eibar31148952421050
9Espanyol31121094342146
10Celta Vigo30125134551-641
11Alavés311010112938-940
12Valencia31116144754-739
13Las Palmas32108145157-638
14Malaga3289153649-1333
15Deportivo La Coruña32710153550-1531
16Real Betis3187163351-1831
17Leganés3169162648-2227
18Sporting Gijón3257203464-3022
19Granada3148192765-3820
20Osasuna3238213273-4117
View full Spanish La Liga table

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