Barça B have won an intense and hard-fought Barcelona derby thanks to a Gumbau penalty and an Aleñá goal in extra time. The blaugranas faced an Espanyol B side which is fighting to stay in the league at the Ciutat Esportiva Dani Jarque and they needed to be on their game to get the win. They produced a fantastic performance despite already having secured the title last week.
The second half was the difference as Espanyol B ended the match with nine players on the pitch and Barça punished them. This victory stretches Barça B’s unbeaten run to 13 games going into the play-off in two weekends time.
The blaugranas started the match strongly with Palencia threatening only two minutes in and Cucurella having a shot on goal a couple of minutes later. Espanyol looked like they were playing a defensive game looking to create danger on the counter. It almost worked perfectly as they had a clear chance which neither Soria or Guille could convert.
Slowly, the home team grew into the game and it became a more equal affair. It was intense but chances were at a premium. Alfaro and Cardona tried to break the deadlock with a couple of long-distance shots but neither could find the finish.
At the restart the game heated up and the referee had to show some yellow cards to calm everyone down. However, not much was happening in a footballing sense. In the 58th minute Guille went close for Espanyol and Barça responded with an Alfaro shot that hit the post and a Romera effort over the bar.
Barça B were clearly dominating again and they were particularly menacing down the flanks. In the 74th minute the deadlock was finally broken as Manchon fouled Cardona in the box during a goalmouth scramble which saw the Espanyol player pick up his second yellow of the day. Gerard Gumbau coolly slotted home the spot-kick and punished the home team who were a goal and a man down.
Following the goal, the game threatened to boil over with strong tackles and fouling taking over. This ended with Lluís also being sent-off for a second yellow and it meant Espanyol were down to nine as they fought to get something out of the game. Barça B punished them in extra time as Aleñá scored a great goal to make it 2-0.
The result doesn’t change anything at the top of the table as FC Barcelona have already won the league title but it did extend their unbeaten run to thirteen games. Moreover, if Gerard López’s team beat Ebro then they would match the record haul of 82 points for a Group 3 champion.