La Liga: Barcelona suffers defeat to Villarreal in eight-goal thriller, as Xavi announces plan to leave

Barcelona suffered a defeat to Villarreal in a scintillating goal thriller at Nou Camp.

Xavi’s men went into the break trailing the visitors by a goal courtesy of Moreno’s 41st opener.

After the break, Akhomach doubled the lead for Villarreal, before Barcelona sprung to life and got into the game, with GĂĽndogan and Pedri levelling things up in the 60th and 68th minute, respectively.

In what seemed like a saving grace, Eric Bailly scored an own goal to put Barca in front in the 71st minute, but the yellow submarines weren’t done as goals from Gonçalo Guedes in the 84th minute, Sørloth and Morales in stoppage time crushed Xavi and his men.

The result leaves the defending champions 10 points off the top of the table and as though the defeat wasn’t enough, Xavi announced after the game that he would be leaving the club as manager at the end of the season. 

The former Barcelona and Spain midfielder took over as coach in November 2021 after leaving Qatari club Al Sadd and led Barca to the La Liga title in his first full season in charge in 2022-23.

By Faith Kordoo 

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