Barcelona had a narrow escape against Rayo Vallecano in Madrid on Saturday, with an own goal by Rayo Vallecano defender Florian Lejeune saving them from defeat in a 1-1 draw.
Rayo midfielder Unai López gave the hosts the lead with a stunning shot from outside the area in the 39th minute at Vallecas Stadium.
Barcelona struggled until late in the second half. After substitute Raphinha hit the post, Lejeune accidentally turned a cross by Alejando Balde into his own net in the 82nd minute.
The draw left Barcelona in third place in the Spanish league. Girona currently leads the table, followed by Real Madrid and Barcelona.
Despite a modest budget, Rayo Vallecano has remained undefeated against Barcelona in their last five meetings, winning three and drawing two. Barcelona’s last victory over Rayo came in Jan. 2021 in the Copa del Rey.
Barcelona played its first match this season without midfielder Gavi Páez, who tore his ACL while playing for Spain last week.
Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong expressed disappointment, saying, “We didn’t play well today. We didn’t reach our potential. We have had lots of injuries. I myself just came back from an injury and I did not feel sharp. The only answer is to keep on working.”
Goalkeeper Iñaki Peña made his first appearance of the season but couldn’t stop López’s brilliant volley from long range.
Reflecting on the match, López said, “In the first half we were superior and then we faded a bit because they are a great team.”
Reporting by The Associated Press.
Get more from Barcelona
Follow your favorites to get information about games, news and more
Denial of responsibility! Vigour Times is an automatic aggregator of Global media. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, and all materials to their authors. For any complaint, please reach us at – [email protected]. We will take necessary action within 24 hours.