Leaders Barcelona held by Getafe

Leaders Barcelona held by Getafe

Barcelona maintained their unbeaten record in LaLiga but drew for the second league game in succession as Getafe held the leaders to a goalless stalemate at the Nou Camp.

The hosts failed to register a shot on target during the first half, when Luis Suarez had a goal correctly ruled out for offside.

Getafe goalkeeper Vicente Guaita made a fine save in stoppage time to prevent Suarez heading in a late winner as Barca missed out on the chance to re-establish their nine-point lead at the top.

Barca boss Ernesto Valverde’s team selection saw full debutant Yerry Mina start alongside Lucas Digne in an unfamiliar centre-back pairing that seemed to encourage the visitors.

Early on Mina, who made a cameo from the bench in the Copa del Rey on Thursday, was fortunate that Amath Ndiaye strayed offside when played in.

The 23-year-old Colombian’s nervy start continued as he gave the ball away and had Sergio Busquets to thank for snuffing out the danger as Angel tried to link up with Amath.

Barca were struggling to get hold of the contest, in part thanks to a series of robust Getafe challenges, and Mina was once again caught out when he played Angel onside, with the forward’s attempt going narrowly wide via a deflection off the Barca man.

On the stroke of half-time, the home side finally had the ball in the net when Suarez turned home Lionel Messi’s free-kick only for the assistant referee to correctly rule the Uruguayan offside.

Suarez expressed his displeasure with the decision but could have no complaints as the two sides reached the interval without a goal.

It was the first time in six years that Barca had failed to register a shot on target in the opening half of a LaLiga game at the Nou Camp.

Philippe Coutinho, who had been largely anonymous in the first period, finally gave goalkeeper Guaita something to deal with early in the second half with a well-struck shot that was comfortably saved.

Suarez then came close with a stretching attempt from Paco Alcacer’s pass that he poked narrowly wide.

Getafe were posing a threat on the counter, though, and when Mina stepped in to clear for a corner after Marc-Andre ter Stegen was caught out of position, Vitorino Antunes lashed a volley off target from the set piece.

With Barca looking short of ideas, Valverde withdrew Coutinho and Alcacer for Andres Iniesta and Ousmane Dembele just after the hour mark.

Messi won a free-kick from a Faycal Fajr foul but, on his 300th appearance at the Nou Camp, the Argentinian sent his try over the top.

Mina’s height was a weapon from set pieces as he headed a Messi free-kick straight at Guaita before nodding another attempt wide from a corner.

Getafe brought on former Arsenal and Crystal Palace midfielder Mathieu Flamini for Angel with 12 minutes to go in an attempt to close out the game and they were indebted to their goalkeeper for some impressive late saves.

Guaita thwarted Messi from close range and then the same player from further out before brilliantly tipping a Suarez header over the top in stoppage time.

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