FULL TIME: Valencia 2-3 Barcelona
- 2nd Half
- ter Stegen65'
- Gabriel Paulista49'
- 1st Half
Valencia CF - FC Barcelona
Follow the Liga live Football match between Valencia CF and FC Barcelona with Eurosport. The match starts at 21:00 on 2 May 2021.
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Alba wins a 50-50 high up the pitch and that wastes a few more seconds for Barcelona. Can Valencia create one last opportunity? They are stuck in the corner flag. Time nearly up.
It doesn't look like Koeman is going to make any more changes. Barcelona are going to go with what they have until the end of the match. They are nearly there. This would be a big win.
Gabriel and Cillessen get in a bit of a mix up following a long ball forward from Barcelona and the away side now have a foothold high up the pitch, which suits them.
There will be four minutes of stoppage time played at the end of the match.
De Jong bursts through the midfield and looks set to go clean through on goal, but Wass gets his foot to the ball on the slide tackle. The referee points to the ball as de Jong complains.
PICTURE: Valencia still in this!
Can Valencia create one last chance to snatch something from this game? All of a sudden Barcelona look a bit edgy. Losing two points here would be a disaster for them.
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL! Valencia 2 (84 mins - Carlos Soler) Barcelona 3. What an incredible strike and Valencia are still in this game! The space opened up for Soler 25 yards out from goal and he thundered an effort past ter Stegen from distance! Wow. Sensational stuff from the talented Valencia midfielder.
No penalty! The officials take a look at a potential handball by Diakhaby inside the area. It certainly struck the hand of the Valencia player, but no penalty kick is awarded.
PICTURE: A trademark Messi freekick
- OffHugo GuillamónValencia CF
- OnKevin GameiroValencia CF
And here's Gameiro for the home side. He's a player who knows how to score a goal.
- OffUros RacicValencia CF
- OnChristian OlivaValencia CF
Gracia makes his second change of the match with Oliva coming on.
Araujo, Mingueza, Pedri, Ilaix… they have all become first team figures for Barcelona this season. They are the future of the Camp Nou club and have all contributed this season.
It’s not just that results have improved over the course of the season, especially in 2021, it’s that Koeman has succeeded in bringing through a number of young players at the club.
At this point, you would have to assume Koeman will keep his job as Barcelona manager beyond the end of the season, even after Thursday’s defeat. The Dutch manager has turned their season around.
- OffSergiño DestFC Barcelona
- OnSergi RobertoFC Barcelona
And here's Roberto for Barcelona. He replaces Dest at right wing back.
- OffPedriFC Barcelona
- OnIlaix MoribaFC Barcelona
Changes for Barcelona with Ilaix on for the final 15 minutes.
PICTURE: Barcelona in front
While the European Super League proposal was widely seen to be about greed for the clubs involved, Barcelona are carrying close to £1 billion in debt. They also saw it as a route to survival!
In fact, Barcelona president Joan Laporta is still claiming that the controversial European Super League proposal will be revived in some way. He isn’t about to let this one go!
Of course, the last few weeks in football has been dominated by the European Super League story. Barcelona were one of the 12 clubs who signed up to be founding members of the failed plan.
What a response from Barcelona to falling behind. This had the potential to be a tricky test for Koeman and his players, but they have handled it well and are on course for the win.
- GoalLionel MessiFC Barcelona
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL! Valencia 1 Barceona 3 (69 mins - Lionel Messi). A Messi special! The 33-year-old bends his freekick over the Valencia and into the back of the net despite the best efforts of the defenders back on the line! Barcelona now have a two-goal advantage in this crucial match.
- Yellow cardMarc-André ter StegenFC Barcelona
ter Stegen is shown a yellow card for... well, I'm not exactly sure.
Wass brings down Messi 20 yards out from goal and this will be a good opportunity for Barcelona to extend their advantage. The Catalans are turning the screw on the home team.
- OffToni LatoValencia CF
- OnMouctar DiakhabyValencia CF
A change for the home side with Diakhaby coming on.
Much better from Barcelona since falling a goal behind. It's almost as if the Valencia goal sparked them into life. It added the element of chaos to the match that they needed.
- GoalAntoine GriezmannFC Barcelona
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL! Valencia 1 Barcelona 2 (63 mins - Antoine Griezmann). It's in the back of the Valencia net and Barcelona have turned this one around! De Jong got on the end of a cross to the back post and forced the same from Cillessen. Griezmann was on hand to turn home the shot from close range!
After this, Barcelona will welcome Atletico Madrid to the Camp Nou for what could be a season-defining clash for both sides. After that, we’ll know a lot more about where the title is heading.
That was a dramatic period of the match. Barcelona weren't behind for long. Can they now use that equaliser as a platform to find a second goal and clinch an important win?
- GoalLionel MessiFC Barcelona
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL! Valencia 1 Barcelona 1 (58 mins - Lionel Messi). Messi sees his spot kick saved by Cillessen, the rebound is played back into the middle by Busquets, Pedri has a shot saved on the line by Gabriel and Messi is on hand to bundle it into the back of the net from very close range!
MESSI PENALTY SAVED! That's a really poor attempt by the Barcelona number 10, with Cillessen getting down to make the low save.
That's a clear handball from Lato and the Valencia left-sided defender is shown a yellow card for it.
PENALTY KICK TO BARCELONA! Lato handles the ball inside the area and the referee points to the spot.
Just this week it has been reported that Messi is set to stay at Barcelona. Eurosport reports the Argentine has actually agreed to take a pay cut to help the club attract targets like Erling Haaland.
The emergence of Pedri is one of the things that could keep Messi at Barcelona. The teenager has been one of Barca’s players of the season and is on the same wavelength as Messi.
Pedri has been one of the biggest success stories of this season for Barcelona, but the teenager has looked rather weary in recent weeks. He has played a lot of football in 2021.
Shot over the bar! Another good opportunity for Valencia with the cross played to Thierry at the back post, but he couldn't test ter Stegen on the stretch and the ball flies over.
Well. Barcelona are up against it now. They have dominated this match, seen plenty of the ball, but have struggled to make that count in terms of cutting edge in front of goal.
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL! Valencia 1 (50 mins - Gabriel Paulista) Barcelona 0. The deadlock has been broken and it's Valencia who have found it! Ter Stegen thinks he was blocked at the corner kick, but there was nothing in that and Gabriel drifted around the back to head into the back of the gaping Barca net!
Guedes was through! What a chance for Valencia to find the back of the net! Guedes burst through the Barcelona defence, but ter Stegen came off his line to smother the shot!
Barca have been linked with a move for Sergio Aguero. The Argentine is out of contract at Manchester City at the end of the season and Barcelona do with a centre forward like him.
Indeed, Barcelona still haven’t replaced Luis Suarez after his surprise departure to Atletico Madrid last summer. Braithwaite has done a decent job, but he’s not a true goalscorer.
It will be interesting to see what Barcelona do in the summer transfer window. The club has a lot of debt, but they also have some key areas to strengthen. They could do with a new centre forward, for instance. We saw that in the first half.
PICTURE: Barca have come close
Barcelona dominated possession in the first half, but failed to find the opening goal. They need to show some more cutting edge in the attacking third. All that's missing.
The second half is under way! It's still goalless between Valencia and Barcelona in this La Liga fixture!
- End of 1st Half
HALF TIME: Valencia 0-0 Barcelona. A frustrating first 45 minutes for Barcelona who have dominated the ball and have had opportunities but are still on level terms at the break.
Foul in the box! Pedri goes down in the box after a cross from Lenglet, but the foul goes against the Barcelona teenager who was clumsy in trying to get on the end of the ball.
Alba takes a knock following a challenge by Thierry. The Barcelona left back is holding his lower leg, but looks fine to continue. He gives it a good run and is back on his feet.
Valencia are just a few minutes away from getting into half time level. That would be some sort of achievement for the home side given the dominance enjoyed by Barca.
The shift to a back three has suited Barcelona well in recent weeks. Koeman recognised the faults of his team and this formation masks while allowing them to still be on the front foot.
Almost turned in! Alba, not for the first time, gets in behind Valencia down the left side, his cross was met by Messi at the near post, but Pedri couldn't make contact with the goal gaping!
A long ball forward for Gomez gives Barcelona something to think about, but Lenglet and Pique between them deal with it. The Valencia centre forward has been very isolated.
Prolonged pressure from Barcelona who are knocking the ball around the midfield with ease. Who will be the one to create an opportunity and break open the Valencia backline?
PICTURE: Still goalless
It feels like Barcelona are cranking up the pressure towards the end of the first half. Valencia are camped deep inside their own half, but they have space to expose on the break.
- Yellow cardUros RacicValencia CF
First yellow card of the match and it's shown to Racic for a foul on Pedri.
Alba is getting a lot of space down the left side of the pitch. Valencia are defending with five at the back, but there is space in behind the wing backs for Barcelona to exploit.
Messi over the top! Barcelona win a freekick in a dangerous position on the edge of the box, but Messi sends his shot over the crossbar when he might have tested Cillessen.
On the other hand, Valencia are without a win in their last five matches. This season cannot end quickly enough for the Mestalla side. They must find a way to build and recover.
The omens are good for Barcelona this evening - they have won 10 of their last 11 away matches in La Liga and have scored two or more goals in eight of their last nine away matches in the division.
Pique once again starts for Barcelona this evening. The veteran centre back missed a large period of the season through injury, but has slotted seamlessly back into the side of late.
Racic shot on target! The Valencia midfielder was set up nicely 20 yards out from goal, he gets the effort away on target, but ter Stegen gets down well to make the low save.
Alba with the cross! Intricate play from Barcelona on the edge of the box with de Jong feeding Alba, he was looking for Messi with the cut back, but the deflection is made!
Koeman was shown a red card in the shock home defeat to Granada on Thursday night. The former Everton and Southampton boss can sometimes let anger get the better of him.
No penalty! Pedri definitely had his heel clipped inside the Valencia penalty area, but there appears to have been no VAR check, which is surprising. That could have been a spot kick.
Gracia’s side are probably just about safe from relegation, sitting six points above the bottom three, but they could do with another win to ensure they will stay in the division for next season.
This has been a season to forget for Valencia. They are usually a club challenging for European football, but the Mestall outfit finds themselves slumped in 14th place right now.
De Jong has been in excellent form recently and is enjoying an exceptional season on the whole. Koeman has managed to get the best out of his countryman after a tough first season at Barca.
Shot dragged wide! That was Valencia's first chance of the game with Guedes breaking forward on the counter attack, he passed out to Gaya, but he drags his shot wide of the far post!
Valencia have struggled to get out in the opening 20 minutes of this match. They need to do a better job of absorbing the ball higher up the pitch. If they can do that, Valencia have quality.
PICTURE: No early breakthrough
Across the face! Griezmann played a one-two with a teamate to burst to the byline, his pass across the six-yard box was a dangerous one, but nobody in a Barca shirt gambled on it!
Gomez will give Valencia a threat in the air. Araujo and Pique will need to keep track of the Valencia frontman. Chimy Avila gave them problems on Thursday evening. They can be got at.
The good news for Barcelona after the defeat to Granada is that they still have time to make amends with five games until the end of the season, but Koeman and his players must claim all three points here.
That's two golden opportunities that Barcelona have spurned in the opening 10 minutes or so. They have been on top from the very first whistle and are dominating Valencia.
Big chance for Araujo! Messi's cross into the middle from the freekick was a dangerous one, Araujo made the connection, but Cillessen pulls off the reflex save to deny the Barca man!
Foul on Pedri! That was a sore one for the teenage playmaker as he is clattered by Thierry. This will be an opportunity for Barcelona to create something from the set piece.
Griezmann wins the header! Lenglet spotted the run of his countryman in the Valencia penalty, but it was always going to be difficult for Griezmann to test the keeper from there.
Dest starts at right wing back for Barcelona this evening. Roberto started the last couple matches, but he was poor in the defeat to Granada during the week so Dest is back in.
Araujo starts in central defence for Barcelona this evening. He has been another success story of their season. The Catalans have found a defensive bedrock in the physical Uruguayan.
This looks like a back five from Valencia this evening, which is a change of shape from Gracia. Lato is playing on the left side of the defence with Gaya slightly in front of him.
If Barcelona fail to win the title this season, that second half against Granada will haunt them. They were 1-0 up and set to go top of La Liga, but somehow managed to lose 2-1!
Barcelona have made a good start to this match. They are on the front foot and there's an intensity to their play even at this early stage. The Catalans should already have the lead.
PEDRI... wide! That probably should have been the opening goal with Griezmann and de Jong setting up the shooting opportunity for Pedri, but the teenager sends his effort wide!
What sort of match will we get this evening? Barcelona will be heavy favourites to claim all three points, but the same was true on Thursday night when they lost at home to Granada.
- 1st Half
The match is under way! It's Valencia against Barcelona in this La Liga fixture!
We are about to get under way at an empty Mestalla. Kick off is just moments away.
Here we go. The two teams are walking out on to the pitch... and Pique is there for Barcelona!
There's still some doubt over whether Pique will actually start this match. The Barcelona team has yet to emerge into the tunnel.
It's a rather windy evening at Mestalla for this one. Other than that it's a pleasant night for football.
Not long until kick off at Mestalla. Barcelona are the favourites, with Valencia in the bottom half of the table, but this might be a tricky test for the Catalan visitors.
A bit of uncertainty around Pique for the start of this match, but he's still in the Barcelona lineup. That's one to keep an eye one. How will he cope once the match gets under way?
Pique is back! The Barcelona centre back has now clambered back down the stands and is back on the pitch. That was peculiar. Mingueza has been told to get ready.
Uh oh! Pique appears to have picked up an injury in the warm up and has left the pitch. Rather bizarrely, he has gone up the stands at the Mestalla rather than into the dressing room!
How will Koeman's side respond to the shock defeat at home to Granada on Thursday night? That loss denied them the chance to go top of La Liga. Can they bounce back here?
I'm Graham Ruthven and I'll be taking you through what promises to be a crucial match in the title race at the top of the La Liga table. Barcelona need a win to keep up with the two Madrid clubs.
Dest starts! Roberto drops out of the Barcelona lineup and in comes Dest at right wing back. The American international has enjoyed a solid first season at the Camp Nou.
TEAM NEWS: Valencia - Cillessen, Thierry, Gabriel, Guillamon, Lato, Gaya, Racic, Wass, Soler, Guedes, Gomez. /// Barcelona - Ter Stegen, Araujo, Pique, Lenglet, Dest, Pedri, Busquets, De Jong, Alba, Griezmann, Messi.
Good evening and welcome to Eurosport's LIVE coverage of the La Liga fixture between Valencia and Barcelona. We'll bring you all the action as it happens at Mestalla. Kick off is at 20:00 GMT.