Las Palmas 1-1 Barcelona: La Liga Leaders Drop Points Yet Again to Blow Title Race Wide Open

Las Palmas were able to hold La Liga leaders Barcelona to a single point at the Estadio Gran Canaria on Thursday night, drawing 1-1 with the Spanish giants ahead of their all-important fixture against Atletico Madrid.

The visitors came into this match having refused to be beaten by the Canary Islanders since 1986. 


Lionel Messi was handed the first opportunity of the match in the sixth minute, but the Argentinian failed to exert enough control after receiving a pass from Aleix Vidal in the box on the keeper’s right and the ball went out for a goal kick.

Barca were provided yet another golden opportunity just moments later when Messi picked the ball off a Las Palmas player just past the halfway line and barged forward, with just one defender back to deal with both himself and a partnering Luis Suarez. 

Messi squared the ball off to the former Liverpool striker, but the pass seemed to put Suarez off just enough for Leandro Chichizola to make an important save when the shot was let off.

The Barca magician made good on his next opportunity, however, powering a free-kick past the Las Palmas wall to stick the ball into the top-left corner of the goal in the 20th minute, after going down from a foul.


The Catalan supremos seemed sure to double their lead in the first half, at the very least, yet the home side managed to keep score at 1-0 heading into halftime.

Las Palmas would even go one better shortly after the start of the second period, shocking Ernesto Valverde’s men through Jonathan Calleri’s spot kick in the 48th minute.

The visitors, who hadn’t had a penalty given against them in 78 games, were quite perplexed after seeing the referee point to the spot – as were all of the fans in the stadium, given that the reason for the decision simply wasn’t clear.


Subsequent replays, however, would show that the ball had come off the arm of Lucas Digne after careening off the post, following a corner.

With around six minutes left in regulation, the hosts got handed a great opportunity to take the lead through Tana, who made a fantastic run to get in behind the Barca defence. But rather unselfishly, the winger tried playing the ball across the box to Alen Halilovic only for it to be cut out by Samuel Umtiti.

La Blaugrana were afforded six minutes of stoppage time by the official, but the Canary Islands outfit were able to hold on to what should be a crucial point in their bid for survival, and their first against Barca in 17 years.

Barca, meanwhile, head into their match against Atletico with just five points between them, leaving fans reasonably worried now that the gap could potentially be further trimmed.

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Las Palmas: Chichizola; Aguirregaray, Ximo, Gálvez, D. Castellano; Halilovi?, Gómez, Etebo; Samperio, Calleri, Tana

Substitutes: Raul, Garcia, Macedo, J. Castellano, Toledo, Aquilani, Exposito

Barcelona: ter Stegen; Roberto, Umtiti, Vermaelen, Digne; Vidal, Paulinho, Busquets, Iniesta; Messi, Suarez

Substitutes: Cillessen, Pique, Gomes, Rakiti?, Coutinho, Dembele, Alcacer