The unbeatable Barça of 2023 extended their good form this Wednesday with a solid victory over Betis that is worth much more than three points. Xavi’s men broke the curse of Villamarín, no one had won six consecutive times in the league in the Betic fiefdom, and they put more pressure on a Real Madrid team that is forced to win at home against Valencia this Thursday.

The stakes were too high on the pitch. The locals were looking for the Champions positions and the visitors to reaffirm their leadership. None came out to speculate and they signed a close first half, without many clear occasions. The middle of the field was the game board of a duel of slates. Both wanted the ball, and although it was Xavi’s men who built the most from possession, the locals worked well on transitions, finding opportunities.

Sandro Rosell, in 'Traveling with Chester'.

Sandro Rosell recalls in ‘Traveling with Chester’ his time in prison: “They were going to give me for being president of Barça and Catalan”

The Barça attacked more. Pedri had two chances to put his team ahead, although the clearest was Raphinha’s disallowed goal on 32′. The Verdiblancos also had a chance to get ahead, first Luiz Felipe, who crashed into Araujo, and then Canales, who did the same against Koundé. None of the shots flew in the direction of the goal.

The struggle of forces vanished as quickly as the whistle that opened the second half sounded. the blaugrana they kept the intensitybut the locals completely forgot their game plan, and the clash turned into a siege on the goal of Rui Silva.

Pellegrini’s team made mistakes when the ball was released, and Raphina and Pedri easily outwitted the rival defensive system. In the end, the insistence was rewarded. De Jong quickly took a free kick from three quarters of the field, Balde ran it down the left wing and he put a good pass from death that Raphinha finished off (65′).

Hector Bellerin drives a ball during a crash this season.

Héctor Bellerín, the footballer whom Xavi’s Barça did not let shine

The goal finished off the locals, the siege continued, and Lewandowski –hungry for a goal after completing three games of injury– he made it 2-0 with a good maneuver in the area (80′).

Pellegrini’s men were out of the game, but Koundé, with an unfortunate own goal, raised the hopes of the stands. Betis launched the attack bare-chested, but they did not get the tie in a clash that reached 94′.

Placeholder breast module
Betis – Barça, live: last minute of the League