When did FC Barcelona come to power?

Setback for FC Barcelona in the title race

The Catalans can't get past a draw against the leaders - 0-0 against Atlético Madrid.

Like a shipwrecked man who, after suffering for a long time, sees the shore but then no longer reaches it - this is how the FC Barcelona season threatens to end. After coach Ronald Koeman's team had made up ten points on front runner Atlético Madrid since winter, they missed the longed-for opportunity to overtake in a 0-0 direct duel. As a laughing third, Real Madrid could benefit. A win this Sunday against Sevilla would bring defending champion Real to the top of the table because of the direct comparison they have won against their city neighbors.

At Camp Nou, the home team's passivity was particularly surprising. As if it preferred the siesta mode on the first warm early summer day in the city, it left the initiative to the Atlético defensive specialists for a long time. Especially in the phase after the injury-related replacement of Barça strategist Sergio Busquets (31st minute), the guests also combined some good chances via the agile winger Yannick Carrasco. On the other hand, there was a famous solo by Lionel Messi for a long time, the conclusion of which Atlético goalie Jan Oblak parried just as brilliantly (42nd). In the closing stages, Ousmane Dembélé headed over the goal free-standing (85th).

On a day on which ex-Barça star Neymar extended his contract with Paris St. Germain until 2025, it became evident why the top Spanish clubs no longer dominate in Europe as usual. They are in a state of upheaval, and where Messi's class is still quite reliable at the age of 33, Luis Suárez, a year older, presented an almost pathetic picture. The first visit to Barcelona after moving to Atlético gave the plan a special spice, and Messi crossed the middle line before kick-off to hug his long-time friend. But Suárez ’most striking scene was a swallow, for which Barça goalkeeper Marc-André ter Stegen was heavily accused (31st).

Atlético still celebrated the point win as a success, because it knows: Even their new main competitor has not won their games by a long way. How exhausted the aging and injury-plagued Real appears after the intense Corona season, it last demonstrated during the week during the Champions League elimination against Chelsea.