Barcelona frustrated in goalless draw with Getafe

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Leaders Barcelona continued their unbeaten LaLiga campaign but failed to score at home in the league for the first time since November 2016 after being held to a goalless draw by Getafe.

Atletico cut into Barcelona's lead by defeating bottom side Malaga 1-0 on Saturday, extending its winning streak to three matches.

Philippe Coutinho, who had been largely anonymous in the first period, finally gave goalkeeper Guaita something to deal with early in the second half with a well-struck shot that was comfortably saved.

The last time Barcelona dropped points at home in the league was in a 2-2 draw against Celta Vigo on December 2nd.

Barcelona as expected assumed dominance of the game with a huge chunk of ball possession but they found it hard to make any inroads in Getafe's final third.

The result leaves the Catalan club leading Atletico Madrid by seven points, while their opponents jump up to tenth in the table.

Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, who had a goal disallowed for offside just before halftime, weren't at their best and could not break through the Getafe defense.

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"After tomorrow's game we have a long week with time to recover from our efforts in January".

Valverde responded by sending on Andres Iniesta and Ousmane Dembele in place of Coutinho and Alcacer.

"We did enough to win but we have to recall that Getafe played well too".

Against Getafe they were reduced to pairing new signing Yerry Mina alongside left back Lucas Digne in the centre of defence, although the duo did well to keep the visitors at bay.

"Thomas Vermaelen is coming to the end of his recovery", Valverde added.

After Barcelona thrashed Real Madrid 3-0 in La Liga at the Santiago Bernabeu in December, it looked like nobody could stop them on their charge to the title. The Deep Blues have won only one road game, picking up eight points in their 10 away games.

Sevilla defeated Girona 1-0 with a victor by Pablo Sarabia early in the second half at Sanchez-Pizjuan stadium.

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