(Reuters) – Barcelona extended their LaLiga lead to eight points thanks to second-half goals by Jordi Alba, Gavi and Raphinha that gave them a 3-0 home win against Sevilla on Sunday.
Unbeaten in their last 15 matches in all competitions, Barcelona extended their LaLiga winning streak to five games, piling pressure on rivals Real Madrid, who lost 1-0 to Mallorca earlier on Sunday.
Barca top the standings on 53 points, eight ahead of second-placed Real and 14 above third-placed Real Sociedad. Barcelona have never lost a LaLiga title race when leading by eight points or more.
Sevilla, who have won only five of their 20 LaLiga games this season, are 16th on 21 points, two above the relegation zone.
After losing captain Sergio Busquets to injury early in the match, the hosts were the better side for large parts of the game and controlled the tempo.
Yet they could not make their dominance count in front of goal, with Sevilla keeper Yassine Bounou making two brilliant saves to deny Robert Lewandowski in the first half. Barcelona looked sharper after the break, however, and opened the scoring when substitute Franck Kessie showed great vision to put the ball on a plate for Alba ghosting in behind Sevilla’s defence, with the fullback slotting in from close range in the 58th minute.
Twelve minutes later, Raphinha sped down the right and delivered a perfect low cross to Gavi who tapped it in.
Raphinha got the third goal in the 79th minute with a point-blank strike from an Alba cross. “We have a series of unbeaten games and have played a good game tonight… I’m very happy and satisfied,” coach Xavi Hernandez told DAZN.
“Today we created many chances. I am satisfied with how the team comes out to play and how things are turning out.
“We now have an eight-point advantage, today was an important day but there’s a world left to be played.”