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Barcelona's top-four finish in danger after shock defeat by Cadiz

Sports2022-04-19

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Barcelona's place in La Liga's top four looks much less secure after they suffered a surprise 1-0 defeat at home to relegation-battling Cadiz on Monday.

Lucas Perez's close-range finish early in the second half condemned Barca to a second consecutive defeat on the back of their shock exit at the hands of Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League on Thursday.

Barcelona stayed second but are level on points with both Sevilla in third and Atletico Madrid in fourth while Real Betis in fifth are only three points behind. Xavi Hernandez's team do have a game in hand over the trio below them.

But the loss means Barca have won only one of their last four matches, that victory coming via an injury-time winner against 19th-placed Levante.

Any hopes they had of making leaders Real Madrid feel uncomfortable are surely over, with Madrid 15 points clear at the top, having played a game more.

"We must be self-critical," said Xavi. "We have to say things to each others' faces. This is Barca, and we have to be better. At home, we have to show more hunger, more faith, more character. This was a final, and we have not played it like that."

Cadiz climb out of the relegation zone to 16th, two points clear of the bottom three.

In Italy, Napoli's bid for a first Serie A title in 32 years suffered a massive setback as Stephan El Shaarawy's injury-time equalizer snatched a 1-1 draw for Roma.

Lorenzo Insigne's early penalty looked to have put third-placed Napoli on track to move within two points of league leaders AC Milan with five matches remaining, but El Shaarawy's late intervention left them four points behind.

Reigning champions Inter Milan are two points behind their city rivals in second place, but with a game in hand.

Luciano Spalletti's Napoli are hoping to lift a first Scudetto since the second Diego Maradona-inspired triumph in 1990, but this bad-tempered draw could prove decisive come the end of the campaign.

(CGTN)

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