LaLiga 2023/24: Barcelona secures gritty victory over Osasuna with Lewandowski's late penalty
Barcelona clinched a hard-fought 2-1 win against Osasuna in La Liga, thanks to Robert Lewandowski's late penalty.
Barcelona clinched a hard-fought 2-1 win against Osasuna in La Liga, with Robert Lewandowski calmly converting a late penalty to seal the victory. Jules Kounde had given Barcelona the lead in the first half with a header, but Chimy Avila leveled the score for Osasuna with less than 15 minutes remaining. Lewandowski earned and successfully took the penalty after being fouled by Alejandro Catena, who was subsequently sent off. Despite a spirited effort from Osasuna, Barcelona held on to stay two points behind league leaders Real Madrid in third place. The match also saw new loan signings Joao Cancelo and Joao Felix make their Barcelona debuts.
Barcelona manager Xavi commented, "I think we lacked some good play, some patience, and we have to generate more in attack. The team worked hard, we really had to today, and the team suffered, but we won. I'm content and satisfied with the victory."
Barcelona had early opportunities to take the lead, but Lewandowski missed a clear chance, firing wide after a Frenkie de Jong effort hit the post and rebounded to him. Osasuna put up a strong fight in the first half, with Marc-Andre ter Stegen making crucial saves to deny former Barcelona forward Jose Arnaiz and Aimar Oroz.
Barcelona eventually broke the deadlock just before halftime when Kounde headed Ilkay Gundogan's corner into the net. Osasuna equalized in the second half, with Avila scoring after dribbling across the face of the box.
Lewandowski's late penalty, awarded after Catena's foul, sealed the win for Barcelona. The victory was particularly hard-fought considering Osasuna's reputation for being a tough opponent at home.
Barcelona also introduced new signing Joao Cancelo during the match, while Joao Felix made his debut in the final stages. Girona climbed to second place earlier on Sunday with a 1-0 win against Las Palmas, and Atletico Madrid's game against Sevilla was called off due to expected heavy rain in the Spanish capital.
Real Madrid maintained their perfect start to the season with a 2-1 win over Getafe, secured by another late Jude Bellingham goal.