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LaLiga

Messi Silenced As Barca Suffer Shock Loss

LaLiga

Result: Valencia 2-0 Barcelona

Date: 25 January 2020

Venue: Mestalla

LaLiga leaders FC Barcelona were silenced at Mestalla after suffering a 2-0 loss to Valencia on Saturday afternoon.

All of the Barcelona regulars returned to the side after missing the Copa Del Rey win over Ibiza on Wednesday, as Ansu Fati joined Messi and Antoine Griezmann in the attack.

Barca did not got off the best of starts as Valencia were awarded a penalty after just seven minutes when Gerard Pique brought down Gaya. However, Pique's bluses were spared after Marc-Andre ter Stegen saved Maxi Gomez's penalty.

The Catalan giants had to wait until the 28th minute for a first real opening at the Valencia goal, with Messi's effort from distance sailing over the crossbar.

Ter Stegen was called upon at the other as the German produced a double save to deny Gomez from close range, before Kevin Gameiro was denied a certain goal with a fine stop.

However, Barcelona's resolve was broken shortly after the break as Gomez's strike took a wicked deflection off Jordi Alba to hand Valencia a deserved lead.

Barcelona manager Quique Setien responded with a change just before the hour mark, with the highest scoring midfielder Arturo Vidal replacing Arthur.

The visitors piled on the pressure as the second half continued, but they should have been level on 70 minutes when Griezmann picked out Messi at the far post, but the Argentine somehow headed.

The Mestalla was sent into a frenzy seven minutes later as Gomez doubled Barca's lead with a neat curling finish beyond Ter Stegen after some good work by Torres down the right.

Barca were unable to claw their way back into the contest as Valencia held on for victory and a clean sheet, as Real Madrid can move top on Sunday evening with a win.

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Starting XI: Valencia v Barca

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