Have Barcelona blown it? Lionel Messi scores but Sergio Busquets admits title hopes are ‘practically over’ after squandering lead
Even without the point they secured against leaders Atletico Madrid on Saturday, Barca would be top of the table had they not lost at home to Granada and then, seven minutes from time at Levante, conceded a goal to give their opponents, who entered on a five-match winless run including four defeats, a memorable 3-3 draw.
Blaugrana had the title race in their hands just two weeks ago, only to all-but squander the opportunity with a run of one win in four matches starting with that shock 2-1 defeat to Granada.
"The point doesn't mean much because that's the league practically over for us," admitted despondent Spain midfielder Sergio Busquets, speaking to Movistar after being part of a side that failed to capitalize on Messi's opener inside half an hour and a second from Pedri to make it 2-0 at the break.
Lionel Messi vs Levante | Let Down By Teammates | No Help💔 pic.twitter.com/3nxrGm7tZC— The Undisputed 🐐 (@MessiStan02) May 12, 2021
Messi: Any tactical approach coach?Koeman: I honestly have no clue leo. You're thee GOAT. Just go in and do your thing fam. pic.twitter.com/9dhfZJSUoT— silva (@siilvacfc) May 12, 2021
"We've dropped too many points to fight for the title. We don't have much of a chance now.
"It will depend on our rivals but this is our own fault – [bad] decisions, a lack of concentration. We concede goals too easily."
Ousmane Dembele put Barcelona 3-2 up with less than half an hour to go after Levante had scored twice in three minutes to level. Sergio Leon then notched the late equalizer.
"We don't feel good because it was always going to be difficult but we wanted to put pressure on those at the top," lamented Busquets.
"We had the lead but, as has happened this season, [Levante] scored goals too easily."
Laporta will talk to Koeman in the coming hours. He will ask the coach for explanations on what has gone wrong tactically. Koeman will finish the season.— Cat Radio pic.twitter.com/WzRT4Ck4IS— Barça Universal (@BarcaUniversal) May 12, 2021
A win at home to Sociedad tonight would move Atleti four points clear of Barca with two matches of each club's season remaining, while Real Madrid can leapfrog their arch-rivals by two points with victory at Granada on Thursday.
Inevitably, the self-inflicted nature of Barcelona's threadbare prospect of winning La Liga means Koeman is under more pressure at the end of a largely underwhelming first campaign in charge.
"After that second half, I understand there will be questions, of course," accepted the Dutchman, adding that there are "always questions about coaches".
"At the start of the second half we lost the ball more, our intensity dropped and we switched off defensively.
"It's difficult to reverse that once you've let them back into the game, as we did [by conceding] three goals in 35 minutes."Also on rt.com PSG extension confirms what was already known – Neymar prioritizes money over success and couldn't care less about Barcelona