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FC Barcelona win the Spanish League title against Llevant

The most desired point (1-1). Barça are the Spanish League champions after drawing away to Llevant. Keita scored the goal that eventually secured the third consecutive title, in Guardiola’s third year as coach. There are still two matches to play, but it is mathematically impossible being overtaken Real Madrid. And now, Barça faces its next challenge: the Champions League final against Manchester United.

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12 May 2011 01:33 AM

by

Jordi Clos

Barcelona (FCB).- Like in 2005, Barça went to the Ciutat de València stadium in search of a point to secure the Spanish League title. And like then, the Catalans made no mistake. They got exactly the same score as six years ago and the title was in the bag. More practical and wily than ever, Pep Guardiola\u2019s side went ahead through Keita, to which Llevant almost immediately replied, to win their third domestic championship in a row. Real Madrid will end second.


Patience and Keita cracker

Barça started the game with Abidal in the line-up, which was symbolic of the wonderful values that the FC Barcelona transmits. Up against them was a tough and defensive Llevant side, with Caicedo as their lone striker and who had no qualms about going for long shots. Curiously, Barça didn\u2019t dominate the early possession at all, and the only attacks came from the home side. Barça eventually settled into their passing game, but it was extremely hard to find any spaces. They patiently waited for the moment, and when it came, in the 27th minute, Keita was there with an absolute screamer of a shot from an equally exquisite Xavi assist.

Draw and Messi hits post

The goals didn\u2019t change anything. Barça remained dominant, but now played a little deeper against an opponent that was still keeping it tight at the back. Nevertheless, Llevant managed to sneak an equaliser through Caicedo, who made the most of an uncharacteristic misunderstanding between Piqué and Valdés (min 41). The visitors waited until after the break to show their reaction, when they looked for their second goal with far greater intensity. And they almost got it when an incredible move from Messi ended with the ball hitting the post (min 56).

In the 62nd minute, Abidal made way for Fontàs and was given an ovation off the pitch. The leader was looking to play it cautious in defence but also made forays in search of a goal that would have made the title a certainty. Messi was the most tenacious of all, and went on another slaloming run in the 72nd minute, but his strike skimmed wide of the woodwork.

Let the party commence

From there, Barça took fewer risks, and neither did Llevant, who seemed to have decided that the draw was a good enough result for their particular interests. So, the game ground to a halt with prolonged periods of possession for Guardiola\u2019s side, with the players rarely leaving their own half of the pitch as they awaited the long-desired moment. With swathes of their own supporters already chanting \u2018Campions, Campions\u2019 ('Champions' in Catalan), the final whistle blew and the celebrations could finally begin. With two games still to go, Barcelona are League champions!


Goals

0-1 Keita (min 27)
1-1 Caicedo (min 41)

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  • Barça are this season's Spanish League champions (by FC Barcelona)

  • Barça are this season's Spanish League champions (by FC Barcelona)