Liga: Surprised at home by Cadiz, Barca give up on their title dreams

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FC Barcelona lost to Cadiz on Monday at Camp Nou on Day 32 of La Liga (0-1). A blow that ruined the title hopes of Xavi’s players. Real Madrid may be preparing for the festivities.

The humiliation is still on everyone’s head. And it will probably take time at Camp Nou to forget about this nightmare. Four days after their elimination against Frankfurt, Barca could not fill their gap to welcome Cadiz this Monday during the Europa League quarter-finals on Day 32 of La Liga (0-1). The match was boycotted by La Grada de Animacion (the Catalan club’s main supporters group) in protest against the ticket sales system, which allowed 30,000 intrepid fans to fill the stands last week. And to take a clear dominance over the premises.

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After this unprecedented uproar, 200 societies expressed their discontent at the Esplanade in front of the stadium. With slogans hostile to President Joan Laporta. A tense affair felt in the crowd. Only 57,495 spectators came to watch the match against Cadiz (there were 76,112 against Sevilla FC two weeks earlier). It must be said that title hopes were blown away on the day Karim Benzema allowed Real Madrid to snatch victory in the lair of Seville (2-3).

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Lenglet as a new starter

And without the overwhelming support of their supporters, Barca were unfazed by the second-worst attack in the championship. Despite extensive control of the ball (76% capture) and several attempts (18 shots), Xavi’s players failed to find fault against the Andalusian bloc. Last September, the two teams split in a draw at the Estadio Nuevo Mirandilla.

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But this time at Camp Nou, the spectators achieved this feat by registering a victory for the first time in history. Lucas Pérez scored the only goal of the evening after a double save on Marc-Andre ter Stegen’s line. With Clement Lenglet in central defense (for the first time since December) and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in place at Memphis Depay front, FC Barcelona didn’t weigh enough on the offensive.

Busquets joins legend with Iniesta

Ousmane Dembele, determined but clumsy, left no stone unturned. But Cadiz goalkeeper Jeremias Ledesma dismissed all the hot balls he had to negotiate. That’s enough to extinguish the partners of Sergio Busquets joining Andres Iniesta on the podium of the most capped players in Barca history (647 games), behind Lionel Messi (778) and Xavi (767).

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Thanks to this historic success, Andalusians come out of the Red Zone and find themselves in 16th place. The Barcelona players remain second (with one game less) 15 points behind Real. In direct danger from FC Sevilla, Atlético de Madrid and Betis Sevilla. After fifteen matches without a loss in La Liga, we have to raise our heads on the lawns of Real Sociedad on Thursday (9:30 p.m.) to secure direct qualification for the Champions League.

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