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Football Briefs: Barcelona drop points in dull draw with Getafe

Last updated on: February 12, 2018 10:51 IST
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Getafe CF'S Mauro Arambarri tackles FC Barcelona's Lionel Messi during their La Liga match at Camp Nou in Barcelona on Sunday

IMAGE: Getafe CF'S Mauro Arambarri tackles FC Barcelona's Lionel Messi during their La Liga match at Camp Nou in Barcelona on Sunday. Photograph: Alex Caparros/Getty ImagesAlex Caparros/Getty Images

La Liga leaders Barcelona failed to break down Getafe in a dull 0-0 league draw on Sunday, leaving the Catalans seven points clear at the top of the table.

Philippe Coutinho came close with a long range effort which was tipped wide by Vicente Guaita, with the Getafe goalkeeper also blocking a Yerry Mina header and a late effort from Luis Suarez.


Barca talisman Lionel Messi was below his best and off-target with various set-pieces, while Ousmane Dembele returned from injury but could not help from the Nou Camp bench.

After second-placed Atletico Madrid won at Malaga on Saturday, Barca's draw means Diego Simeone's side have eaten into their lead by two points.

Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde was forced to play full back Lucas Digne in the centre of defence, alongside January signing Mina, making his full debut, due to injuries to Gerard Pique and Thomas Vermaelen, and Samuel Umtiti's suspension.

However the makeshift pairing was relatively solid, with Getafe creating few chances, the best of which saw Mina block Angel Rodriguez's shot after the forward broke through.

"It's good news for us that these two players did quite well in a difficult role," said Valverde.

"We would have liked to have taken the three points, (but) we're coming from a tiring month and logic says you can't win all the games.

"You can think that it's a slip-up, we have to keep moving forward, but this is not something that can't happen to you."

Barcelona failed to record a shot on target in the first half, something which has not happened since 2012, as they showed signs of tiredness after Thursday's King's Cup semi-final win at Valencia.

Suarez volleyed in just before halftime but was correctly ruled offside, with the Uruguayan ranting furiously at the assistant referee in frustration.

Towering defender Mina came close with two headers, one stopped by Guaita and another which flew inches past the post, as Barcelona failed to break down the visitors.

Valencia end losing streak against rivals Levante

Valencia beat local rivals Levante 3-1 on Sunday to end a six-game losing streak in all competitions and go third in La Liga.

Marcelino's side had suffered in recent weeks, losing to Barcelona in the King's Cup and to Las Palmas, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid in La Liga.

They got back on track at the Mestalla, however, as Santi Mina put the hosts ahead in the 17th minute before Sergio Postigo equalised a minute later.

It was still 1-1 in the 65th minute when Levante defender Coke had a goal harshly ruled out for a foul before Luciano Vietto put Valencia ahead in the next move.

Mina struck the post before Dani Parejo converted a late penalty, contentiously awarded when Rober Pier clashed with Simone Zaza in the area.

Valencia moved up to third on 43 points, a point ahead of Real Madrid having played a game more than the title holders. They trail second-place Atletico by nine.

Lyon upset by Rennes, lose ground in race for second in Ligue 1

Lyon's Maxwel Cornet and Stade Rennes’ Ramy Bensebaini vie for possession

IMAGE: Lyon's Maxwel Cornet and Stade Rennes’ Ramy Bensebaini vie for possession. Photograph: Emmanuel Foudrot/Reuters

Olympique Lyonnais lost ground in the race for second place in Ligue 1 when they were upset 2-0 by Stade Rennais at home on Sunday.

Wahbi Khazri struck after five minutes and James Lea Siliki added another in the dying seconds to give the Brittany side their first win after three straight defeats in all competitions.

The result left Lyon in fourth place on 48 points, five points adrift of second-placed Monaco who thrashed Angers 4-0 away on Saturday.

Olympique de Marseille, held 2-2 at St Etienne on Friday, are third on 52 points, 13 behind runaway leaders Paris St Germain who snatched a 1-0 win at Toulouse on Saturday thanks to Neymar.

Rennes' Khazri made the most of a defensive blunder by Marcelo and beat Anthony Lopes from close range to put the visitors ahead on six minutes.

Lyon dominated possession but Nabil Fekir was being closely monitored by the opposition defence.

The French international forward came close to levelling, however, with 15 minutes from time when his long-range effort shaved the post.

But Rennes doubled their tally three minutes into stoppage time when Lea Siliki was alert to finish after Lopes had parried his first shot back into his path. 

Karamoh's stunning strike spares Inter from unwanted record

Inter Milan avoided setting a club record for their longest winless run in Serie A on Sunday when a stunning strike from teenager Yann Karamoh gave them a 2-1 win over Bologna who finished with nine men.

Inter had failed to win their last eight league matches, plus two more in the Coppa Italia, since thumping Chievo 5-0 on December 3 and their previous five outings in Serie A had ended in 1-1 draws.

The win took Inter third although there is a huge 14-point gap between themselves and Juventus above them on 62 points. Napoli lead with 63 points after their 4-1 win over Lazio on Saturday.

The video replay system (VAR), being trialled in Serie A and other competitions, was involved in more controversy at Torino where visitors Udinese had a goal controversially disallowed on their way to a 2-0 defeat.

Eder gave Inter a perfect start at San Siro by turning in Marcelo Brozovic's pass in the second minute but, as so often this year, the hosts shot themselves in the foot.

Inter defender Miranda made a hash of a clearance and allowed Rodrigo Palacio to nip in and equalise against his old club in the 25th minute.

Inter missed two excellent chances after halftime and their frustration showed when Brozovic was substituted, jeered off the field and responded by sarcastically applauding the San Siro crowd.

But the mood changed completely thanks to 19-year-old Karamoh who played a one-two with Rafinho, slipped past two defenders and fired a 25-metre shot past Mirante in the 63rd minute.

It was the Frenchman's first goal in Serie A following his move on loan from Caen in August.

Bologna defender Ibrahima Mbaye was sent off after being booked twice in four minutes although the visitors still gave Inter a jittery finale and had a penalty appeal turned down after the referee reviewed the incident using VAR.

The referee also used VAR to dismiss Adam Masina for a reckless challenge in stoppage time.

Antonin Barak thought he had given Udinese the lead at Torino in the 20th minute but, after taking several minutes to review the incident with the VAR, the referee disallowed the effort for a push by Maxi Lopez.

Torino took advantage to win with goals from Nicolas N'Koulou and Andrea Belotti, the Italy forward ending a two-month drought by running from inside his own half to score a superb solo effort.

Cengiz Under scored twice in AS Roma's 5-2 win over bottom club Benevento which lifted them to fourth as they overtook neighbours Lazio.

Guilherme stunned the Stadio Olimpico to give Benevento a seventh minute lead before Federico Fazio headed Roma level.

Edin Dzeko headed Roma in front from Under's cross in the 59th minute before the Turk helped himself to two goals, the second a superb curling effort from the edge of the area.

Enrico Brignola pulled one back for Benevento and Gregoire Defrel completed the scoring from a penalty, his first goal for Roma.

Uruguayan Diego Laxalt scored a late winner for Genoa for the second match in a row to give them a 1-0 win at Chievo while Edgar Barreto and a Fabio Quagliarella penalty, his 17th goal of the season, gave Sampdoria a 2-0 win over Verona. 

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