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05.11.2008 11:00

Important goals against Valladolid

Jesús Carrillo

Pep Guardiola and Xavi Hernández were the scorers of two vital goals at crucial moments for FC Barcelona against Real Valladolid almost a decade ago and now they prepare to face the same team again.

Xavi netted a goal in the Nuevo José Zorrilla to earn three points for Lous van Gaal’s team. That win, only days before Christmas, saw the Dutch coach given a vote of confidence at a very delicate stage of the season with the team not doing very well in the league and having been knocked out in the group stage of the Champions League by Manchester United and Bayern Munich.

Decisive effort

EUFORIA_LLIGA_98-99_XAVI.jpgThe Blaugrana had tasted four consecutive league defeats before that having been beaten at home by Real Mallorca and Deportivo and away by Atlético de Madrid and Villarreal. With no points from a possible 12 things did not look good for the team that had one the league and Copa del Rey double the previous term. Xavi’s headed goal after 16 minutes not only helped ease the problems but started the team on a run of eight wins-in-a-row that saw them move into first place. At the end of the season Barça were proclaimed champions for the second consecutive year and many look back as the win at Valladolid as the starting point.

Guardiola last goals

It was against Valladolid that Guardiola scored his last goals for FC Barcelona. It was in the 18th round of games of the 2000-01 season and the team, coached by Llorenç Serra Ferrer, were riding high at the top of the table. The game was level in the 90th minute when the current Barça trainer netted a direct free-kick to put the hosts ahead and Rivaldo added a third moments later. The side went on to win their next three games, including a 7-0 triumph against Athletic Club de Bilbao.

Away day

COMIAT_GUARDIOLA.JPGGuardiola also scored a goal at Valladolid that helpe Barça qualify for the Champions League. It was on the 37th weekend of the season when Carles Rexach had replaced Sera Ferrer as coach. The team were outside the Champions League going into the game, but the captain netted after three minutes to put Barça ahead. The match ended 2-2 but the point was enough to help push the team on and on the last day of the campaign, Rivaldo scored a memorable hat-trick against Valencia to see the team move above los Che and into the Champions League places.
Important goals against Valladolid

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