Friday 3 February 2023 Dublin: 10°C
Alvaro Barrientos/AP/Press Association Images
# Shock
David Moyes masterminds an unlikely Real Sociedad win over Barcelona
Jordi Alba’s second-minute own goal proved the difference between the sides.

BARCELONA MANAGER LUIS ENRIQUE’S decision to rest a collection of his star names backfired as the Catalans were beaten by David Moyes’ Real Sociedad.

Real Madrid’s 2-1 loss at Valencia earlier in the day meant victory for Barca would have seen them climb to the top of La Liga, but they passed up that chance as their recent poor record at Anoeta Stadium continued.

The men from Camp Nou have now drawn two and lost four of their last six games at the home of Sociedad in all competitions.

Defeat also ended their 11-match unbeaten run, with their last reverse having come against Celta Vigo back in early November.

Luis Enrique left Lionel Messi and Neymar on the bench for the start of this match, after both men had been given an extra two days’ break over the Christmas period and returned to the club later than the rest of the squad.

Unsurprisingly, both were introduced in a bid to conjure up an equaliser – Messi at half-time and Neymar shortly before the hour – but neither man was able to have the desired impact as David Moyes’ struggling Sociedad lifted themselves three places to 13th, five points clear of the drop zone.

Victory completed an impressive home league treble for Sociedad, who have now beaten Real, Atletico Madrid and Barca at Anoeta this season.

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Spain Soccer La Liga AP / Press Association Images AP / Press Association Images / Press Association Images

Barca got off to a torrid start when they fell behind in the opening exchanges.

A corner was taken short to Sergio Canales, who whipped in a left-footed cross that Alba could only head into his own net with Claudio Bravo – returning to his former club for the first time - beaten.

The Barcelona bench for tonight’s game with Real Sociedad is pretty spectacular

Real Madrid’s 22-game unbeaten run comes crashing to a halt against Valencia

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