Barcelona secured a 1-0 win over Real Sociedad on Thursday, tightening their grip on a top-four finish in La Liga thanks to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s early goal.
Barca’s run-in, though, might be impacted as their defense was nearly totally wiped out by injuries at Anoeta, with Dani Alves, Ronald Araujo, and Gerard Pique all leaving with issues, while Jordi Alba looked to play on in agony.
Barcelona secured a huge win in the race for Champions League qualifying by capitalizing on Real Sociedad’s poor finishing and Marc-Andre ter Stegen’s great saves.
“For long spells they dominated us, they had more of the ball than us – they are a great team, physically very strong. It’s a huge victory for us,” said Xavi.
Aubameyang’s goal was his 11th for Barcelona since joining in January, and it was especially significant given his team’s desire to overcome an unexpected slump in form.
Xavi pushed his teammates on Wednesday to break free from the “negative dynamic” created by back-to-back defeats at Camp Nou by Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League and Cadiz.