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Dublin: 8 °C Tuesday 10 December, 2019
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Barcelona goalkeeper Ter Stegen delivers 60-yard assist for Suarez as champions see off Getafe

Goals from Luis Suarez and Junior Firpo saw Barcelona secure a 2-0 win.

Ter Stegen and Suarez combined for Barcelona's opening goal.
Ter Stegen and Suarez combined for Barcelona's opening goal.
Image: firo Sportphoto/Jürgen Fromme

BARCELONA KEPT THE pressure on Real Madrid ahead of their derby with Atletico Madrid on Saturday with a hard-fought 2-0 win at Getafe that moved them to within a point of the La Liga leaders.

Their first win away from home since April puts Ernesto Valverde’s side, who finished with 10 men with Clement Lenglet’s late red card, temporarily level on 13 points with Atletico and Real Sociedad as Diego Simeone’s side attempt to snatch top spot from their local rivals later.

“This match was crucial for us to rid ourselves of the sensation of never being able to win away,” said Valverde.

“We knew that we were going to play at a very demanding ground in hot conditions, on a pitch where the ball doesn’t zip much and against a tough opponent that stops you from playing.

“We didn’t play well in the first half but once we took the lead they basically didn’t have any chances.”

A remarkable counter-attack goal, launched by a 60-yard Marc-Andre Ter Stegen pass, finished off by Luis Suarez put Barca on their way four minutes before the break, and Junior’s tap-in shortly after the restart made sure of the three points.

Ter Stegen is embroiled in a row with Bayern Munich captain Manuel Neuer over the Barca stopper’s lack of opportunities with the Germany team.

However he showed his class when he raced out of his goal to stop a Getafe attack before launching a pin-point pass over the home side’s dozing defence to Suarez, who calmly lobbed the opener over David Soria.

“Sometimes when passes come off like this the goalkeeper is just clearing the ball. I don’t know if that is the case here, but regardless he brings us a lot,” added Valverde.

The win was Barca’s second in a week as they attempt to recover from an miserable start that led to questions surrounding Valverde’s future.

- © AFP, 2019

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