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Xavi Suffers First Loss As Barca Manager

Xavi Hernandez suffered his first defeat as manager of FC Barcelona, who went down 1-0 to Real Betis at the Camp Nou on Saturday evening.


Result: Barcelona 0-1 Real Betis

Date: 04 December 2021

Venue: Camp Nou

Xavi made three alterations for the encounter as Sergino Dest, Clement Lenglet and Philippe Coutinho were all handed starts, with Gerard Pique, Eric Garcia and Frenkie De Jong dropping to the bench.

The Catalans had the chance to break the deadlock after 11 minutes when Jordi Alba sent in a cross for Coutinho, who saw his header saved by Rui Silva.

Betis had a chance of their own at the other end when Sergio Canales sent Juanmi through on goal, but the striker could fire into the side-netting with Marc-Andre Ter Stegen to beat.

Xavi was then forced into an alteration shortly before the break as Gavi was stretchered off after a collision with Hector Bellerin and replaced Riqui Puig.

It was more of the same in the second half, but Betis had the ball in the back of the net seven minutes after the restart through Juanmi, although celebrations were cut short due to the offside flag.

The hosts responded with a double change soon after as Ousmane Dembele and Frenkie de Jong replaced Nico Gonzalez and Coutinho for the final 30 minutes.

While Barcelona dominated possession, it was Betis who broke the deadlock on 79 minutes as former Blaugrana winger Tello turned provider to pick out Juanmi who had the simple task of slotting into the bottom corner.

The Catalans were unable to find a way back into the contest as Betis held on for maximum points, while handing Xavi his first loss.

Here's the final top 10 ranking for this year's Ballon d'Or: 


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