Barcelona beat Malaga to continue perfect start to the season

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Barcelona have continued a confident start to the 2015/16 season with a 1-0 victory at home to Malaga on the second weekend of La Liga action.

Thomas Vermaelen found himself an unlikely match winner as he scored a striker-like half volley to gift his side the three points over difficult opposition. 

Barcelona started the match in a typically quick fashion moving the ball around well and applying pressure on a Malaga defence that had maintained two clean sheets in their two previous meetings with Barca.


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The Catalonians had a multitude of chances in the opening 25 minutes with Mascherano's header from a left sided Messi cross glancing the top of the bar failing to provide the Argentine's first Barcelona goal. 

The controversial moments of the half came in quick succession as Neymar had the first claim for a penalty as his quick turn left Miguel Torres's hand making contact with the ball as he made his slide tackle.

The second chance just moments later had seen Luis Suarez brought down by Angeleri inside the 18-yard box with the referee failing to be convinced at a second asking.

The away side came close just a couple of minutes later as a low drilled Amarabat cross was met by only a light connection from the boot of Cop with this quick opportunity failing to provide with three minutes to go before the break.

The break came with the Catalan side needing a spark after the interval with Messi and Neymar having quiet halves due to a focussed and hardworking Malaga defence.

The away team showed an attacking intent early in the second half with a couple of counter attacks, just to give the Barcelona coach Luis Enrique and his defenders something to stay aware of.

The home sides' first chance of the second half came with Neymar making a powerful run into the box and a quick square ball to Messi requiring a quick snap-shot from the Argentinian that Kameni smothered quickly.

Vermaelen the match winner

As Barca gathered more momentum on the attack the away team found themselves pinned inside their own box with Messi providing his first stern test for Kameni as a fast curling effort forced a strong near post save from the Cameroonian keeper.

At 70 minutes Messi forced yet another good low save from Kameni with a powerful driven effort from 25 yards, the goalkeeper was cementing his place as one of the leagues best with a solid performance.

However an impressive performance could not prevent Barcelona from knocking on the door with success three minutes later, a left sided Suarez cross was met by a diving Kameni parry only for the ball to fall to Vermaelen in the centre of the box who was ready on the half-volley with his effort finding the goal giving the home side the much needed lead.

Ten Minutes later Messi had his final attempt of the evening to get himself onto the score-sheet as Neymar yet again cut back to the forward only for another quick effort to be parried away by Kameni.

Malaga almost had an upset on the cards as a final minute break away had seen Charles almost gain his side a point as he found himself in front of Jordi Alba but failed to make the right connection which let the home side off the hook.

Luis Enrique will be pleased with another three points and clean sheet as his side have overcome difficult tests in their first two games of the La Liga season and Javi Garcia will certainly have positives to take away from his teams away performance at the Camp Nou.

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