Ousmane Dembele scored a screamer and Wissam Ben Yedder missed a last-minute penalty as Barcelona got here from behind to carry the Supercopa de Espana at Sevilla’s expense.
The sport, held on international soil for the primary time at Tangier’s Stade Ibn Batouta, had been in some doubt with Sevilla sad a few leisure of guidelines round non-EU gamers.
Barca drew the sting from that row by leaving summer time signing Malcolm out of their matchday squad and nonetheless had the firepower to win the sport 2-1.
The Spanish champions conceded the lead when Pablo Sarabia scored inside 10 minutes, went in stage after Gerard Pique snapped up the rebound of a Lionel Messi free-kick and moved forward when Dembele rifled into the highest nook.
Ben Yedder had an opportunity to equalise from the spot within the closing seconds however his tame effort was simply saved by Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
Barca settled shortly however discovered themselves on the flawed facet of a swift counter assault that left them chasing the sport.
Jordi Alba’s clearing header fell kindly for Luis Muriel and the Colombian darted straight for the field.
After wrong-footing Barca’s defence with fast ft he slotted a move for Sarabia, who bent a first-time shot contained in the submit. The response got here shortly however was not decisive, Messi and Alba each denied by new Sevilla goalkeeper Tomas Vaclik.
Pablo Machin’s facet flirted with a second when a Franco Vazquez cross sailed agonisingly over Muriel’s head on the far submit however Barca have been extra persistent.
Luis Suarez, performed onside by Simon Kjaer, fizzed a shot low and broad throughout aim earlier than Ever Banega gave up a harmful free-kick in a central place.
Messi clipped his effort arduous, flat and broad of the wall and was solely denied by the submit. A second contact towards the woodwork got here by way of the again of Vaclik’s head however that’s the place Sevilla’s luck ran out, with Pique arriving to show residence the rebound.
Barca despatched on World Cup finalist Ivan Rakitic at half-time, Rafinha making approach, and Philippe Coutinho was just some minutes behind as a alternative for Arthur.
Sevilla wouldn’t go down quietly, although. With an hour gone Vazquez made a sensible run to the close to submit to fulfill Banega’s nook, arching his neck and flicking a again header towards the crossbar.
Ter Stegen was fully overwhelmed and watched helplessly because the ball bounced clear. Vazquez issued one other warning when he let fly from distance and missed the goal by a matter of inches.
Vaclik made a superb double save from the double act of Suarez and Messi however barely had time to savour it earlier than Dembele struck.
With white shirts standing off him the winger moved into area and despatched a rocket into the highest nook.
Aleix Vidal assured late drama when he was bundled over by Ter Stegen however his fellow substitute Ben Yedder produced a tame spot-kick which begged to be saved.
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