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Barcelona cruise past Atlético Madrid with 3-0 win

Barcelona capped off a successful week with a dominant 3-0 victory over Atlético Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano. This win extends their unbeaten run to a staggering 10 games (7 wins, 3 draws) and propels them into second place in La Liga.

Despite coming into the match with shaky domestic form, Atlético started brightly. Fueled by their midweek Champions League win over Inter Milan, Diego Simeone’s men immediately pressed high and threatened Marc-André ter Stegen’s goal early on. Pablo Barrios nearly put them ahead with a curling shot that grazed the post.

On the other hand, Xavi’s Barcelona, fresh off their own European victory, lacked intensity in the opening half-hour. However, they managed to snatch the lead just before the break in dramatic fashion. A well-placed pass from İlkay Gündoğan found Robert Lewandowski in the box. The Polish striker cleverly laid it off to João Felix, who, on loan from Atlético, coolly slotted the ball past his parent club’s goalkeeper. The joy was short-lived for Xavi though, as he was sent off for dissent just before halftime after receiving two quick yellow cards.

Simeone attempted to change the tide in the second half by introducing attacking reinforcements like Antoine Griezmann and Memphis Depay. But before they could make a significant impact, Barcelona doubled their lead within minutes of the restart. Raphinha found Lewandowski in the box, and despite a poor first touch, the world-class striker showed his composure by burying the ball into the bottom corner.

This second goal served as a wake-up call for Atlético, and they nearly pulled one back through a powerful volley from Marcos Llorente. However, Ter Stegen made a superb save, denying them a crucial lifeline. Memphis’ shot on the rebound was also smothered by the impressive Barcelona goalkeeper.

Despite a brief resurgence, Atlético’s hopes were dashed when Barcelona netted their third goal. Once again, Lewandowski was instrumental, providing a pinpoint cross that found Fermín López. The defender rose above everyone else to powerfully head the ball home.

This third goal proved to be the final nail in the coffin for Atlético. They struggled to respond and even finished the game with 10 men after Nahuel Molina was sent off for a cynical foul on Vitor Roque.

Barcelona’s convincing victory sees them climb to second place, capitalizing on Girona’s loss to Getafe. While they still have a significant gap to bridge to league leaders Real Madrid (8 points behind), their recent form inspires hope, especially with the El Clásico looming in April.

Man of the Match: Robert Lewandowski (Barcelona)

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