Barcelona star Neymar banned for Real Madrid clash

And well, you can nearly be sure of him not missing out considering the importance of the next few games for Barca. It was for impeding the home side from taking a quick free-kick that time. The answer to that question is tough to give.

In the 27th minute, he received his first caution for tying his shoe directly in front of a Malaga free kick. While some think the player was booked for time wasting, others think it was because he was in the way of a Malaga player during his free kick. Real Sociedad for his two yellow cards either way. "It will be an interesting game for sure".

However, a first-half strike from ex-Barcelona forward Sandro Ramirez and a late effort from Jony Rodriguez ended their hopes.

"They scored with their first chance thanks to our mistakes in interpreting the offside", added Enrique. Neymar has been shown a second yellow card for a bad challenge through the back of Llorente.

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Barcelona captain Andres Iniesta insists it is pointless to blame the officials for the 2-0 defeat to Malaga on Saturday.

"We have to be very careful in some games because there have been strong tackles from behind that did not result in a yellow even though they were clearly worth a booking". You couldn't say that Atlético put in a great performance, we certainly did but we had to get that second goal, which would have given us that peace of mind.

Antoine Griezmann had netted a late equaliser as Atletico Madrid secured a 1-1 draw away at their city rivals earlier in the day, which could have allowed Barcelona to leapfrog them at the top of the table. "Today we had a very good opportunity and we couldn't take the points".

But Real failed to press for another goal and Griezmann capitalized on its complacency. "We had chances to equalise but we knew they could always catch us on the counter". This time it wasn't the Kroos-Sergio Ramos combination that produced the goal but Pepe.

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"In the last four months, the best is Neymar", he said. Therefore Barcelona is virtually 6 points behind Madrid with only 7 matches to play...

Defeat leaves Barca still three points behind Real Madrid at the top of La Liga.

Winger Keko, midfielder Zdravko Kuzmanovic and defender Bakary Kone will all miss out on the match against Barcelona while Recio and Juankar will both return to the side after serving a one-match ban and will likely come straight into the starting lineup.

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