90min

Barcelona’s mission for a top-four surface took a big action forwards on Thursday as Xavi’s males saw off fellow European hopefuls Real Sociedad.

The Catalan side were on top in the very first half and excellent worth for their lead, which came through Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s header, however they took their foot off the gas after half-time and had Marc-Andre ter Stegen to thank for maintaining their lead.

Barcelona were a little lucky not to go behind at an early stage. Some nervy play around the back saw Alexander Isak press Ter Stegen into a genuine issue, however his clearance struck the Swede and went directly broad.

Just a couple of minutes later on, the visitors were commemorating as Aubameyang headed house from a couple of backyards out. An outstanding passing relocation resulted in Ousmane Dembele striking the post, however Gavi recycled ownership and discovered Ferran Torres, whose lobbed pass put it on a plate for Aubameyang.

Things got a bit scrappy after that and Barcelona’s next genuine possibility would not come for another 20 minutes. It was Frenkie de Jong who came close, side-footing an effort from the edge of package that wasn’t far at all.

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