Barça beat Real to take a 12-point lead in La Liga

The Catalan club now have a 12-point lead over runners-up Madrid with 12 games to play.

Barcelona took a big step towards winning their first league title since 2019 after coming from behind to beat Madrid 2-1.

Franck Kessie scored an injury-time winner to help the Catalan club take a 12-point lead over league-leading runners-up Madrid with 12 games remaining.

Barcelona were saved by VAR for the second game in a row as Madrid saw a Marco Asensio goal disallowed in the 81st minute for offside.

“We’re still not sure it was offside,” Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti said of Asensio’s goal. “It didn’t feel like 100 per cent offside. With this doubt, we return to Madrid.

Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema shoots on goal [Nacho Doce/Reuters]

However, Barcelona manager Xavi said he was ‘surprised’ by the Madrid manager’s comments. “It’s obvious, the offside is obvious, it’s scientific, isn’t it? Xavi told reporters. “Without VAR, everything is more difficult. In the end, it becomes fairer, especially with the offside.

Barcelona have won eight league titles in 11 seasons to 2019. They finished second behind Madrid in 2020, then third – behind Real Madrid and champions Atletico Madrid – in 2021, and second again behind Madrid in 2020. last season, the first after the departure of Lionel Messi.

Barcelona are aiming for a 27th league title, which would leave them eight behind Madrid.

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