Sunday. 05.02.2023
LA LIGA

Aubameyang fires Barcelona into La Liga top four

The victory moved the rejuvenated Catalan giants above Atletico Madrid into fourth place as they chase Champions League qualification
17 February 2022, Spain, Barcelona: Barcelona's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in action during the UEFA Europa League play-offs first leg soccer match between FC Barcelona and SSC Napoli at Camp Nou. Photo: Gerard Franco/DAX via ZUMA Press Wire/dpa.
File photo of Barcelona's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in action at Camp Nou. Photo: Gerard Franco/dpa.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang netted his first goals for Barcelona as Xavi's team moved back into La Liga's top four with a 4-1 thrashing of Valencia.

Aubameyang's double and one from Frenkie de Jong gave the visitors a commanding half-time lead at the Mestalla, with the hosts having two goals ruled out before the break.

Carlos Soler pulled one back for Valencia, before Pedri's superb strike added some gloss to the scoreline on the hour mark.

The victory moved the rejuvenated Catalan giants above Atletico Madrid into fourth place as they chase Champions League qualification.

After a scrappy start to the contest, Aubameyang netted his first goal for the Blaugrana on 22 minutes, racing onto Jordi Alba's pass before hammering home at Giorgi Mamardashvili's near post.

That setback stirred Valencia into life and they looked to have levelled when Marc-Andre ter Stegen palmed Jose Gaya's cross into his own net, but the left-back was ruled offside by VAR.

Brilliant Barca

An excellent Barcelona side doubled their advantage after half an hour as a flowing move ended with De Jong tapping home Ousmane Dembele's cut-back.

Xavi's men effectively ended the contest when Aubameyang bagged his second from Gavi's cross after another brilliant move, before Valencia saw another goal ruled at the end of a frantic first half, Soler volleying in after the ball had gone out of play.

Video review intervened once again straight after the break, ruling Aubameyang offside when he thought he had won a penalty, before Soler netted a thumping header from Bryan Gil's delivery.

But Valencia's hopes of an unlikely comeback were dashed on the hour when substitute Pedri converted from long range, and the visitors withstood some late pressure to extend their strong run of form.

Aubameyang fires Barcelona into La Liga top four
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