Last-minute De Jong header salvages point as record falls in Catalan derby – XenBet

Luuk de Jong salvaged a point for Barcelona with a last-gasp header as Xavi’s side drew 2-2 at Espanyol on Sunday.

Pedri opened the scoring after just two minutes at the RCDE Stadium before Sergi Darder levelled with a first-half strike.

Raul de Tomas edged Espanyol ahead in the second half, but Barca equalised in the dying seconds of stoppage time through De Jong. Both sides finished with 10 men on the pitch after Gerard Pique and Nicolas Melamed received their second cautions for a late clash off the ball.

Manu Morlanes, who made a fleeting substitute appearance before going off injured, was also red-carded on the touchline. The draw meant Barca set a LaLiga record for the most consecutive games unbeaten in a derby rivalry (24) and end the weekend in fourth, four points behind third-placed Real Betis.

Barca went ahead when Pedri converted the first chance of the contest, poking past Diego Lopez from close range after Jordi Alba’s excellent delivery from the left.

Espanyol made their visitors pay for not capitalising on early dominance as Darder expertly curled into the top-right corner from the edge of the area after De Tomas’ offload.

Gavi thought he had restored the visitors’ lead after the interval as he lifted into the roof of the net, but a VAR check found Frenkie de Jong offside in the build-up after a deflection from Pedri.

Vicente Moreno’s hosts then took the lead in the 64th minute, with De Tomas sneaking behind Eric Garcia to latch on to Darder’s pass and fire into the bottom-left corner.

Luuk de Jong spurned a glorious chance to equalise as he headed over with time running out, before Pique and Melamed squared up off the ball and both received their marching orders.

But De Jong atoned for his miss when he powered home Adama Traore’s delivery in the sixth minute of stoppage time, while Morlanes was sent off in the final seconds for dissent on the touchline.

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Author: Heidi Porter