Robert Lewandowski Strikes Towards Struggling Elche Earn Barcelona High Spot | Soccer Information
Relentless striker Robert Lewandowski pounced twice as Barcelona hammered 10-man Elche 3-0 to maneuver a degree clear on the high of La Liga on Saturday. The Polish ahead continued his sensational type since becoming a member of from Bayern Munich this summer season, with a brace taking him to 11 targets in eight appearances throughout all competitions. With Actual Madrid, who boast a one hundred pc document after 5 video games, visiting Atletico Madrid within the Sunday night time capital derby conflict, this was an opportunity for Barcelona to provisionally depose their rivals for the primary time this season, they usually took it.
“We’ll sleep as leaders for the primary time in two years,” mentioned Barca coach Xavi Hernandez. “We have accomplished our homework and received the three factors. We’re on a superb path.”
Xavi rotated in midfield after the Champions League defeat by Bayern Munich on Tuesday, with Frenkie de Jong and Franck Kessie stepping in, whereas Memphis Depay was handed a uncommon begin in assault.
Elche, backside of the desk, made the job considerably simpler for the hosts when Gonzalo Verdu hauled down Lewandowski as he burst via on purpose after 14 minutes and was swiftly dismissed.
Lewandowski, high of the division’s scoring charts with eight targets, had been uncharacteristically profligate towards his former membership, however he didn’t prolong that generosity to the guests at Camp Nou.
Barcelona racked up the possibilities and inevitably Lewandowski broke the impasse after 34 minutes.
Pedri set Alejanrdo Balde in down the left and the younger defender reduce a ball throughout the six-yard field for the veteran striker to easily cushion into the online.
“We knew he would rating targets and make the distinction, however the private aspect of him has stunned me,” mentioned Xavi.
“He has quite a lot of humility, dedication, starvation. He is very arduous working.”
Memphis doubled the lead with a pointy particular person flip and highly effective strike which flew previous Edgar Badia, and Pedri added a 3rd shortly earlier than half-time nevertheless it was disallowed for offside.
Barcelona solely needed to wait three second half minutes for it, with Lewandowski pouncing on a unfastened ball within the field and ending clinically to place the sport far past Elche’s attain.
After Cadiz’s late win over Actual Valladolid on Friday night time, Francisco Rodriguez’s aspect had been left backside of La Liga on one level, and by no means regarded like altering it towards Xavi’s glowing Barca.
Badia denied Lewandowski his hat-trick with a tremendous save and the striker fired fractionally over the bar earlier than being changed by Ferran Torres, to an ovation from house supporters already below his spell.
Lengthy after Lewandowski had been changed, his identify continued to ring across the stadium. Within the ahead, Barcelona lastly have a participant to interchange Lionel Messi‘s purpose contributions and assist them compete for the title once more, which they final received in 2019.
Lewandowski’s arrival and the membership’s summer season signings spree have given supporters a purpose to look at once more, because the 85,000 robust crowd testified to, in comparison with final season’s languishing attendances.
“The thrill of the followers is palpable, within the stadium, within the streets, it’s important to preserve this hope and perception,” added Xavi.
“The persons are related, Barcelona’s assist is extra alive than ever.”
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