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La Liga: Joao Felix on target as Barcelona thump Atletico Madrid

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MADRID: Joao Felix opened the scoring for Barcelona and guided them to a 3-0 victory against his parent club Atletico Madrid at Metropolitano Stadium on Sunday during the ongoing La Liga 2023-24.

Barcelona became the first team to defeat Atletico Madrid at their home stadium this season, breaking their 25-game undefeated streak at Metropolitano Stadium.

Notably, Atletico’s last home defeat also came against the Catalans in January 2023.

With this victory, the defending champions displaced Girona at the second position in the La Liga standings only behind Real Madrid.

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Felix, who is on loan from Atletico Madrid, gave the visitors an early advantage with a 38th-minute goal after he found Robert Lewandowski’s cross and hit from the centre of the box.

Lewandowski himself also got his name on the scoring sheet and doubled the advantage in the early minutes of the second half with a right-footed shot from the right side of the box.

The Polish striker provided another assist as Fermin Lopez powered a header in the 65th minute to make it 3-0.

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Barcelona are unbeaten in the last 10 matches since their coach Xavi announced that he would leave at the end of the season.

“I’ll push the (players) more than ever,” Xavi told DAZN, refusing to throw in the towel on Barcelona’s title defence.

“And now that I’m leaving, even more so — we will try to improve and compete for La Liga and the Champions League, the two most important trophies.”

Meanwhile, in another La Liga clash Rayo Vallecano edged Real Betis 2-0, while Villarreal and Almeria Almeria registered 1-0 victories over Valencia and Las Palmas respectively.

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