Barcelona retake nine point La Liga title lead with Athletic Club win

Barcelona have reopened a nine point gap at the top of La Liga via a battling 1-0 win at Athletic Club.

La Blaugrana were forced to dig deep in the closing stages in Bilbao, as they responded to Real Madrid’s win over Espanyol, with a gritty three points in Bilbao.

The Catalans were far from their best in the opening stages with Brazilian international Raphinha firing home in first half added time, via their only real chance.

Barcelona carried an intermittent threat after the restart, but they were indebted to Marc-Andre Ter Stegen late on, as the German produced two incredible saves.

Athletic Club looked to have grabbed a late equaliser, only for Inaki Williams’ brilliant goal to be ruled out by VAR, as Barcelona scraped over the line to victory.

Up next for Barcelona is a high stakes El Clasico tie with Real Madrid at the Camp Nou next weekend, ahead of the international break, with Athletic Club on the road at Real Valladolid.

Images via Getty Images

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