Football: Barca title hopes ended by Celta defeat

Barcelona's Argentine forward Lionel Messi reacts to Celta's Spanish forward Santi Mina's goal on May 16, 2021.
Barcelona's Argentine forward Lionel Messi reacts to Celta's Spanish forward Santi Mina's goal on May 16, 2021. PHOTO: AFP

BARCELONA (REUTERS) - Barcelona saw their hopes of winning La Liga extinguished as they were beaten 2-1 at home by Celta Vigo on Sunday (May 16).

Barca were dominant in the first half and deservedly took the lead through Lionel Messi in the 27th minute, as the Argentine headed Sergio Busquet's precise cross past Ivan Villar to make it 30 league goals for the season.

Celta equalised against the run of play 11 minutes later as Santi Mina fired in from the edge of the box following a pacey counter-attack.

Defender Ronald Araujo went close with a header after the restart as Barca tried in vain to retake the lead. However, they found themselves up against it when Clement Lenglet was dismissed with six minutes to play.

With just one minute of normal time left, Mina netted his second of the game to condemn the Catalans to at best a third-placed finish in Ronald Koeman's first season in charge. Barca are third on 76 points, four behind Real Madrid in second with one game remaining.