Levante 2-3 Barcelona: Player ratings as Blaugrana edge enthralling clash
Barcelona worked hard to earn a stunning late 3-2 victory over Levante on Sunday night, moving them back into second place in the La Liga table.
Looking far from a relegation candidate, the hosts pushed their star-studded visitors to the wire, matching them as they played their part in a captivating game of football, rather unjustly coming away with nothing to show for their tireless efforts.
In the end, though, Xavi Hernandez’s side’s quality told as goals from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Pedri and Luuk de Jong were enough to render penalties from Jose Luis Morales and Gonzalo Melero irrelevant.
The tone for a pulsating game was set within the opening stages, with both sides seeing goalmouth action early on; Levante marksman Jose Luis Morales was almost gifted a goal by Dani Alves after 20 seconds only to put his effort just wide, while Frenkie de Jong also went close with a curling effort that sailed just over the bar after a couple of minutes.
The fantastically frenetic start to proceedings didn’t subside but, despite Morales almost scoring a Puskas Award contender – weaving his way through Barcelona and only being denied a solo classic by the hand of Ter Stegen and an Eric Garcia goal-line clearance – among other notable chances for both sides, the referee blew for the interval with the scoreline poised at 0-0.