Lionel Messi’s superb free-kick was enough for Barcelona to win Athletico Madrid at the Camp nou in what looked like a title decider. The Rojiblancos side came to Camp nou with the intention of closing in on league leaders to 2 points after series of inconsistent display from the Catalonia club reduced their commanding 10 points advantage to 5. However their ambition was caught short by the Argentine.
Simeone went with a 4-4-1-1 formation with field high profile names such as Griezmann, Koke, Diego Costa, Gabi and Saul Niguez. Ernesto Valverde retain his 4-3-3 formation with the introduction of Coutinho at the left-hand side of the attacking trio. Iniesta, Rakitic and Busquet. The game began in old fashioned Barcelona on the attacking gear while Athletico reverted to their usually defensive habits with Diego Costa more or less a spectator. Barcelona almost suffered an injury scare with Iniesta but the Spaniard defile event to remain in the pitch. On the 25th minute Lionel Messi was fouled by Thomas close to the 18-yard box. The resultant set piece was converted by Lionel Messi a minute later as Oblak was unable to stop the Argentines beautiful curler from hitting the back of the net. The goal was the 600th career goal for the Argentine Exactly 10 minutes later the Iniesta was replaced with Andre Gomez over hamstrings concerns. Barcelona were still able to carry the lead to the break.
The second interval began with Athletico pressing high up the pitch as the Rojiblancos side searched for an equalizer. Simeone demonstrated his eagerness to get the game back to level terms with the introduction of Correa and Gamiero for Vrsalijko and Gabi with 21 minutes of the second interval already elapsed. The game continued at the same pace, intensity and tempo for the remainder. Athletico finally got a goal with Kevin Gameiro but was ruled for an offside because Diego Costa was slightly offside before giving a little flick to the Frenchman. The Barcelona side was able to hold onto their lead till the final whistle
The Result means that Barcelona retains there unbeaten crown in the la Liga with barely 11 games to go. Athletico Madrid finally give up on the title and possibly consolidate their second spot in the La liga as the Roji blancos side now have 8 points separating them from Barcelona