Barcelona midfielder Sergio Busquets
The Blaugrana hosted Cadiz in La Liga last night (April 18) in a match many expected them to win. However, the visitors put together a fantastic performance to seal a 1-0 win, with Lucas Perez scoring the decider three minutes into the second half.
Xavi Hernandez’s side enjoyed 76% possession and attempted 18 shots, of which six were on target, but just couldn’t find the back of the net. The defeat put an end to their 15-match unbeaten streak in the league and kept them 15 points adrift of leaders Real Madrid, who have played a game more.
Speaking after the match to Diario Sport, Busquets stated that his team need to put in the required effort get back on track immediately and end the season well. He said (as quoted by Barca Blaugranes):
“We have seven finals left and we have to make an effort. We have to win them all, starting with the one on Thursday against Real Sociedad, a tough and difficult rival.”
The 33-year-old added:
“We have to improve things and have a little more luck. Now it’s time to work, watch videos… We have to make this last effort.”
It was a landmark night for Busquets, who moved into joint-third place on Barcelona’s all-time appearances list. The Spaniard played in his 674th match for the club across all competitions, going level with Andres Iniesta.
He is currently only behind Lionel Messi, who played 778 matches, and his current manager Xavi, who made 767 appearances for the Catalans.
Barcelona face some tricky fixtures in the final weeks of their La Liga campaign
Prior to the loss against Cadiz, Barcelona fell to a 3-2 defeat at the Nou Camp against Eintracht Frankfurt in the UEFA Europa League quarterfinals. The defeat saw them exit the competition 4-3 on aggregate, effectively confirming that they will end the 2021-22 season without any silverware.
The Blaugrana will now likely direct all their focus towards finishing second in La Liga, with Real Madrid looking on course to seal the title. However, it won’t be easy for Xavi’s side, who are currently level on points with third-placed Sevilla.
Barcelona’s next match will be away to Real Sociedad, a fixture that has often proved to be tricky. They still have to visit fifth-placed Real Betis and will also host UEFA Champions League semifinalists Villarreal before the end of the season.