Published: Mon, April 02, 2018
Sports | By Brett Lawson

Messi a 'difference maker' for Barca every time he plays - Valverde

Messi a 'difference maker' for Barca every time he plays - Valverde

Messi - it had to be him - snatched a point Barca scarcely deserved with a curling effort that Rico could only get a hand to as the league leaders completed an unlikely recovery.

Valverde concedes his side played a risky game in the second half, adding: "The first half was fairly balanced, even though they had some unsafe counter-attacks".

Argentina's World Cup-winning coach Carlos Bilardo believes Lionel Messi is the world's best player, but he has to win a World Cup to be on the same level as Diego Maradona and Pele.

They would have been deserving winners here and, in truth, could have been out of sight had Muriel and Vazquez finished any number of risky breaks in the second half.

After goals from Franco Vazquez and Luis Muriel had given them a two-goal lead, the home side had chance after chance to wrap the win up and become the first side to beat Barca in the league this season.

However, Messi provided a steadying influence to Barca and Luis Suarez pulled a goal back in the 88th minute.

He had been left out of the starting line-up due to a hamstring complaint, with coach Ernesto Valverde perhaps keeping one eye on Wednesday's Champions League quarter-final against Roma.

Valencia strengthened their already powerful grip on a place in next season's Champions League with a 1-0 win away to Leganes.

China reassures public over debris from falling space station
In fact, in decades of space exploration there is only one recorded instance of a person being struck by space debris . For a brief time, Tiangong-1 supported two successful missions that included China's first female astronauts.

Barcelona has a 12-point lead over second-place Atletico Madrid, which hosts struggling Deportivo La Coruna on Sunday. "It shows the spirit of the team and that's why we're celebrating like this".

"We are all a little angry in the dressing room but football is like that", Sevilla coach Vincenzo Montella said.

"The first half was quite even", he added.

Girona went ahead early in the second half with a shot by Alex Granell, who found the top corner from outside the area.

Gareth Bale opened the scoring with a typical sprint and powerful finish, before Benzema's penalty following a foul on Lucas Vazquez allowed Madrid to double the lead before the break.

"We will see on Tuesday, I am happy for his performance", Zidane said.

Levante held Girona to 1-1, ending the Catalan club's home winning streak and moving further from the relegation zone.

Like this: