Barcelona secure UEFA Champions League spot with 2-1 win over Real Betis

A stoppage-time goal from defender Jordi Alba earned Barcelona a 2-1 La Liga victory over Real Betis on Saturday, securing Xavi Hernandez’s side qualification for the Champions League and one step closer to the lucrative Spanish Super Cup final.

Alba received a pinpoint pass from Dani Alves in the dying seconds of the game and blasted the ball past goalkeeper Rui Silva with a superbly taken volley for the first time.


With the league title already sealed by Real Madrid, Barcelona are now second on 69 points in the standings, five points clear of Sevilla in third and eight ahead of Atletico Madrid in fourth, both a game less.

Betis striker Juanmi had the first goal in an entertaining game, but his effort couldn’t find the side netting until the seventh minute.

Ten minutes later, Manuel Pellegrini’s side lost goalkeeper Claudio Bravo to injury as he suffered the injury while stretching for the ball and was replaced by Rui Silva.

The Portuguese substitute, however, put on a great show, starting with a superb header save from Ronald Araujo minutes after entering the pitch.

Betis created more chances in a spirited first half but substitute Ansu Fati put the visitors ahead after the break with a low shot to the left corner in the 76th minute.

Barca’s lead didn’t last long, as three minutes later former Barcelona defender Marc Bartra equalized for the Copa del Rey champions with a header.

But Alba sealed the game in the final minutes.

Barcelona, ​​who have won 10 of their last 12 league matches, are poised to wrap up second place and snatch the €3.4m the club would earn by going to the Spanish Super Cup in Arabia saudi.

The two Copa del Rey runners-up – winners Betis and runner-up Valencia – will be joined in the 2023 Spanish Super Cup final by the top two teams in the La Liga table.

Betis, meanwhile, squandered an opportunity to move level on points with fourth-placed Atletico in their bid to secure a Champions League spot next season, as they remain fifth on 58 points. .

Before the game, Barcelona gave Betis players a guard of honor for their cup win last month.

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