So it all came down to this. 37 games completed but the season would need one more to decide the recipient of the league trophy. Atlético Madrid had fallen away last weekend which meant this was a straight shootout between Barça and Real Madrid.
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Of course, the advantage was firmly with Barça. Achieve victory against Granada and the title would be theirs but there was still an outside chance Madrid could pip them to the post. Barca started the game like a team hungry for the title. They were immediately on top of the opponent and within seven minutes, there had been a goal-line clearance.
A corner was flicked up at the near post by Javier Mascherano and Gerard Piqué was the man to meet it. His header was just pushed away by Andrés Fernández in a move the made some question why goal-line technology was not in place. But replays did show the ball hadn't entirely crossed the line.
However, three minutes later and Barcelona were again troubling Fernández. This time it was Lionel Messi running parallel to the box. He hit it with his weaker right foot and after a slight bend in the air, the keeper palmed the ball over the bar.
A few minutes later and Messi was the one providing. A great ball over the top was met by Neymar but the bounce allowed the defender to chase back and launch it for a corner. That corner resulted in another header for Piqué but this time it was easily caught.
In Madrid's game, Los Blancos had taken the lead meaning they stood on top of the table. However that was short lived as in the 22nd minute, Barça took the lead. Granada were playing very narrow which allowed Jordi Alba and Dani Alves to exploit the wings. It was the former that created the goal. A quick one-two with Neymar and Alba was away down the left side of the penalty area. Looking up, he slid the ball across the goal to the grateful feet of Luis Suárez. The Uruguayan slotted the ball home to tighten his grip on the Pichichi trophy.
The attacking efforts didn't stop there though and Granada could not get any grip on the game. A clear handball allowed Messi to have a free kick effort but it was comfortably saved.
Madrid had gone 2-0 up and similar to the first goal, Barça responded in quick fashion. A long ball forward by Mascherano looked to be going nowhere until Alves sprinted to retrieve it. With the ball just reaching the byline, the full back managed to get a cross in. No one had believed he'd reach it, other than Luis Suárez. The Barça number 9 nipped in front of the keeper at the near post to head the ball into the net for his second of the game.
The half time whistle arrived with Barcelona in cruise control and a comfortable score of 2-0. The team emerged from the tunnel and Suárez was all but confirmed as the league's top scorer with Ronaldo retiring at half time in the other game.
In the second half, Granada began to grow into the game more and managed to create a clear chance in the 58th minute. Alves had pushed up high which allowed Fran Rico to run towards goal. It required a good save from Marc André ter Stegen to prevent the ball from reaching the net.
On the flip side, Barça were searching for the third goal which would kill the game. After the hour mark Suárez had worked space on the right flank and drilled the ball across the box. Neymar reached to make contact but it was light and his attempt to find the far corner was denied by the keeper.
The game was coasting towards the final whistle as Luis Enrique elected to bring in some fresh legs. Mascherano was replaced by Jérémy Mathieu and Ivan Rakitić was replaced by Arda Turan. But Barcelona were still lacking that third goal which meant as we entered the final ten minutes there was still a chance of a twist in the tale. Enrique was pictured looking rather nervous on the sideline as he counted down the seconds.
Luckily for him, five minutes later they got it. Neymar excellently broke the offside trap and unselfishly passes the ball to Suárez. The striker easily slides it into the goal to wrap up his hat trick and the league title for Barcelona.
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