Barcelona have pulled off a stunning 3-2 comeback win away to Sevilla as the home side played the last 18 minutes with 10 men.
Goals to Cesc Fabregas and David Villa in the last five minutes turned the game around to give Barcelona victory but Gary Medel’s red card in the 72nd minute made it tough for Sevilla to hold on at home.
Medel and Fabregas clashed after the Sevilla midfielder picked up the ball to delay a Barcelona free-kick and as the pair confronted each other both leaned in with their heads, the latter reeling away, his hands clasped over his face.
Fabregas’ dramatic reaction to minimal contact was enough to see Medel shown a straight red card and Barcelona capitalised on their man advantage, eventually scoring two late goals to win the game and maintain their perfect start to the La Liga season.
Sevilla led 2-0 in the 48th minute when Alvaro Negredo added to Piotr Trochowski’s first-half goal.
But Fabregas gave Barcelona some hope of a comeback when he scored from the top of the penalty area in the 53rd minute.
After Medel was sent off, Barcelona pressed for an equaliser and eventually broke through in the 89th minute, Lionel Messi piercing the hosts’ defence with a precise pass and Fabregas stabbing the ball home.
In the third minute of second-half injury time, substitute Villa struck the winning goal, playing a swift one-two with Messi at the top of the box and then slotted the ball past Sevilla goalkeeper Andres Palop.
Second-placed Malaga had a big win on Saturday, thrashing Real Betis 4-0 in a dominant performance where they also hit the bar and had a shot cleared off the line.
A penalty in the 13th minute changed the course of the match, with visiting goalkeeper Casto sent off for a foul on Malaga winger Eliseu.
Former Betis player Joaquin scored from the spot past replacement shot-stopper Adrian San Miguel del Castillo.
Malaga doubled their lead in the 28th minute when Javier Saviola passed in behind Betis’ defence to Francisco Portillo, who returned the ball and his Argentine team-mate duly hit the back of the net.
The home side also hit the post in the first half and then Eliseu’s close-range shot was blocked on the line after the break, before Malaga finally moved 3-0 ahead thanks to an Antonio Amaya own-goal in the 72nd minute.
Isco completed the rout of Betis with a goal from a tight angle two minutes later as Malaga remain four points behind Barcelona.
In other La Liga results, Valencia defeated Zaragoza 2-0 and Sociedad won by the same margin over Athletic Bilbao.
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