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Summary

  1. Messi strikes winner to send Barcelona top
  2. Barcelona extend unbeaten run to 13 games
  3. Munir opens scoring for Barca, Juanpi levels
  4. Malaga fall to second defeat in a row

Live Reporting

By Mike Whalley

All times stated are UK

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Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

That's all from me - other than to tell you that, in England, Leicester are top of the Premier League again after beating Stoke 3-0. Manchester United, meanwhile, have been beaten 1-0 at home by Southampton.

You can catch all the Premier League post-match reaction here. Thanks for your company - see you soon.

How they stand

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Here's how the table looks now. Atletico Madrid can regain the leadership by beating Sevilla tomorrow afternoon; Real Madrid visit Real Betis later that evening.

La Liga
BBC

FULL-TIME

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Lionel Messi
Reuters

Not straightforward for Barcelona today by any stretch of the imagination. That was a very hard won three points to go top of La Liga.  

FULL-TIME

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Barcelona running down the clock now, and Lionel Messi wins a free-kick as he is clipped by substitute Duda, who gets a booking. The visitors should see out the game with this free-kick...

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Chory Castro goes for goal from distance as Malaga strive to save a point - but Claudio Bravo gathers. Barcelona are almost there...

INJURY TIME

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Four minutes to add. That's all that stands between Barcelona and the La Liga leadership...

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

...and Messi almost makes it three. Ivan Rakitic's corner eludes three Malaga defenders to find the forward free 15 yards from goal. He controls and fires goalwards - but keeper Carlos Kameni stops well.

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Lionel Messi's free-kick is deflected away for a Barcelona corner...

Last five minutes

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Andres Iniesta
Reuters

Malaga have run themselves into the ground this afternoon. Now they're defending a free-kick after Pablo Fornals clips Andres Iniesta, picking up a yellow card in the process...

SUBSTITUTION

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Meanwhile, Malaga have made a double substitution; former Manchester City striker Roque Santa Cruz, back at La Rosaleda on loan from Mexican side Cruz Azul, is on for the final stages, as is Duda. Defender Weligton has hobbled off, while Duje Cop has also been replaced.

CLOSE!

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Lionel Messi is always a threat whenever he is on a football field, and he almost seals victory, getting in behind the Malaga defence. He maybe gets a little nudge from Welington, and with the goalkeeper closing him down too, Messi shots wide from a tight angle.

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

A uncertain moment for Sergio Roberto, as the Barcelona left-back misreads a long diagonal ball, and allows Roberto Rosales an opening. The Malaga right-back cuts inside, but the shot is weak, and Claudio Bravo gobbles it up.

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Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Lionel Messi
Getty Images

Ben Ramage: Messi has to be the most scrutinised player ever. Never allowed a quiet game. No-one is world class every single minute.

CLOSE!

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Camacho is back with us, and almost equalises for Malaga. Barcelona deal uncertainly with a free-kick, the midfielder pounces on the loose ball and fires in a shot that Claudio Bravo saves well. Duje Cop tries to turn in the rebound from eight yards, but Bravo is in the right place to gather. Malaga, who were looking a tad weary, are getting a second wind. Final quarter-of-an-hour approaching.

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Brazilian defender Adriano
AFP

Players are falling like flies here. Malaga midfielder Ignacio Camacho needs treatment off the pitch for a blood injury after getting a bang to the head, and is now wearing a red bandage wrapped around his head - so it will be hard to tell if the bleeding starts again. Then Barcelona left-back Adriano goes down with cramp, and has to be replaced by Sergi Roberto.

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Barcelona are edging towards victory here. Considering they are without Neymar up front, and Gerard Pique at the back, considering Malaga have been in decent form over the last couple of months, and considering they have a very big home game against title rivals Atletico Madrid at the Nou Camp next weekend, Luis Enrique will be very, very happy if the scoreline stays as it is.

He dons a body warmer as the temperature drops; Barcelona seek a third goal from an Ivan Rakitic corner, but Arda Turan's header drops over.

YELLOW CARD

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Messi, having given his team the lead, has now been booked. He can have no complaints, either; it was a late challenge on Ignacio Camacho, his studs connecting with the Malaga defensive midfielder's shin. No lasting damage done, and on we go.

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

I should give credit, by the way, to Adriano for providing the cross for that Lionel Messi goal. It was a perfectly-judged ball in for the Barcelona forward. It's Messi's 11th La Liga goal of the season, so he's still some way off the pace in the race to be top scorer. Luis Suarez leads the way there on 18, having scored a hat-trick in the 6-0 demolition of Athletic Bilbao last Sunday.

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Madan Roka: Scissor kick ..Leo messi..Just when it mattered the most.

CLOSE!

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Not that Barcelona are looking any more solid defensively. Chory Castro drives a low cross into what Geoffrey Boycott would call the corridor of uncertainty, and Claudio Bravo spills it as Charles closes in. Barca's defence manage to clear amid the chaos.

In the meantime, a very reluctant Munir El Haddadi gets the hook, as Luis Enrique replaces the Barcelona forward with Ivan Rakitic for the final 35 minutes.

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Lionel Messi celebrates
AFP

Well, isn't that incredible? Lionel Messi has been, by his own high standards, anonymous. But he's just put Barcelona back in front. It was a lovely finish too, angling his body perfectly to fashion a low close-range volley at the far post. As it stands, Barca are going top of La Liga tonight. Can Malaga come back again?

GOAL - Lionel Messi

Malaga 1-2 Barcelona

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

Now, I know Luis Suarez splits opinion because of the way he plays on the edge, but he really does take some punishment sometimes. The Barcelona forward gets his calf raked by the studs of Malaga centre-back Welington. It's a nasty challenge. Messi, very much in keeping with his afternoon to this point, hits the resulting free-kick into the wall. But wait a moment...

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

Lionel Messi
AFP

Here's a picture of Lionel Messi, just to prove he is on the pitch at La Rosaleda. He's had one chance, but it's been a testing afternoon for the new Ballon d'Or winner so far.

KICK-OFF

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

And we're back under way.

SUBSTITUTION

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

Barcelona did not distinguish themselves defensively in that first half, and so Luis Enrique has made a change at the back. Jeremy Mathieu, recently over a calf problem, is on for Thomas Vermaelen.

Tale of the tape - Barca style

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

[STATS] All the numbers from the first half of #MálagaFCB ow.ly/Xra07

[STATS] All the numbers from the first half of #MálagaFCB ow.ly/Xra07

Barcelona's own Twitter account highlights that they had more of the possession in the first half. Which is true, but they weren't always quick to do much with it. Their own graphic shows that Malaga lead 9-4 on goal attempts, although it's 4-4 on shots on targets.

Delight for Diego?

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

Diego Simeone
AFP

Atletico Madrid will be very pleased with the situation at La Rosaleda right now. If the score remains as it is, then Diego Simeone's side will stay top of the league. They host Sevilla tomorrow at 15:00 GMT.

HALF-TIME

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

There was a booking for Barcelona centre-back Thomas Vermaelen right at the end of that first half, by the way. He saw a yellow card for dragging down Charles, seconds after that Torres block.

HALF-TIME

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

Terrific first-half that. Malaga did not let their heads drop after conceding the early goal - Munir El Haddadi's first in the league this season - and deserve to be level through Juanpi. Mind you, it needed a superb block from Miguel Torres to deny Lionel Messi and ensure parity at the break.

Munir El Haddadi
Getty Images

HALF-TIME

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

CLOSE!

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

How did that stay out? Lionel Messi had hardly been in the game at all for 44 minutes, and then he so nearly gives Barcelona the lead. His perfectly waited pass plays in Munir El Haddadi on the left - keeper Carlos Kameni gets down to push out the cross shot, and then it's a tap-in for Messi. But no! Left-back Miguel Torres gets across to make a sensational block.

Kameni seems to have hurt his shoulder in making the initial save, but he's back up and carrying on.

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

Down to the other end, and Charles has a go from about 25 yards with an ambitious effort. It's straight at Claudio Bravo, and the Barca keeper pats it down comfortably.

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

Now Barcelona striker Luis Suarez is on the ground, rubbing the back of his head, after being barged very clumsily from behind by Malaga's defensive midfielder Ignacio Camacho. The referee declines to award a penalty, but it wasn't the brightest piece of defensive play I've ever seen.

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

Ooof. It's getting a bit tasty, this game. Juanpi, the Malaga scorer, is barged into the dugout by Barcelona left-back Adriano as they chase a ball towards the touchline. Players from both sides pile into the argument, in the style of a 2am row in a taxi queue outside a nightclub. Calm down, lads. Calm down.

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

Barcelona have been uncertain at the back throughout, and Malaga deserve to be level. Javier Mascherano plays a dreadful pass out from the back, and the home side quickly work it back to the edge of the area, where a falling Charles knocks through a pass for Juanpi to slot past Claudio Bravo from 15 yards with the aid of a deflection - off Mascherano by the looks of it.

GOAL - Juanpi

Malaga 1-1 Barcelona

PENALTY APPEAL

Malaga 0-1 Barcelona

Ooh, another nervy moment for Barca there. Sergio Busquets gives the ball away in midfield by playing a losse ball back towards goal, and then Thomas Vermaelen stumbles backwards and tumbles over like Terry Scott falling into a duck pond during an episode of classic 1980s sitcom Terry and June. It gives Charles a run at goal - and Javier Mascherano steps across to challenge. Malaga's fans scream for a penalty, but Mascherano got the ball there. Charles is booked for diving, having gone down a little too theatrically.

Malaga 0-1 Barcelona

Barcelona have ridden a pretty intense spell of Malaga pressure there. Luis Enrique's side have not always looked convincing, particularly at the back. Javier Mascherano has played a couple of shaky passes, for one. Barca are trying to slow the game down a bit here.