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Gündogan’s flash of inspiration: Barça avert false start late on

FC Barcelona celebrated their first win in their second league match. A lot of patience and the fine foot of Ilkay Gündogan were needed to overcome Cadiz keeper Conan

Barcelona’s first league home game at the Olympic Stadium – the Camp Nou is currently being rebuilt – was not watched from the sidelines by the red-suspended Xavi, but he nevertheless brought on the just 16-year-old Yamal in place of the also red-suspended Raphinha. He was to play on the outside right.

After the 0-0 draw against Getafe at the start, the Catalans were already under a bit of pressure in view of two wins by Real Madrid, and yet the visitors from Cadiz had the first chance: After only three minutes, centre-back Fali headed over from an acute angle (3rd minute).

Always Conan

In the following period Barça developed the typical Barça dominance, but only rarely did the champions generate the necessary penetrating power. After too lax finishes from Koundé (11th), Pedri (15th) and Lewandowski (24th), it was youngster Yamal who almost finished off the game control, but Cadiz keeper Conan deflected his low shot around the post (29th).

A little later Conan reacted even more strongly when a half-field cross hit on Koundé almost fell into the far corner (34.). Perhaps ter Stegen felt challenged by his colleague’s saves, in any case, shortly after this scene he decided a one-on-one with Roger impressively for himself (35.). Barça had to step up.

Barça also stepped up their game and after the change of ends, they started a real power play. Cadiz bravely resisted, had another great counterattacking chance through Roger (52nd) – but now the FCB lead was in the air. Lewandowski (46.) and Romeu (52.) were blocked from good positions, but the visitors were powerless against Gavi’s header. But the ball hit the crossbar (54th).

Barcelona’s lead, just a question of time? Ramos’ carelessly missed chance proved that the Catalans were always good for a goal with their airy defence (63rd). In addition, they allowed themselves a lull in terms of chances, only Abde’s long-range shot woke Conan up again (80th).

As time was running out, newcomer Gündogan had a flash of inspiration: The German lifted the ball sensitively to the five-pointer, where Pedri ran in and slipped the ball through Conan’s legs (82nd). Barcelona still had chances through Negredo (87th) and Darwin Machis (90th), but in the fourth minute of injury time Joker Torres scored the 2:0 final score. The gap to Real Madrid remains at two points

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