Barcelona's 4-0 defeat over Real Betis brings them closer to winning La Liga.

Barcelona's 4-0 defeat over Real Betis brings them closer to winning La Liga.

After defeating Real Betis 4-0 on Saturday with 10 men, Barcelona tightened its hold on first place in the La Liga standings and got one step closer to winning their 27th league championship. 

The victory, which increased the hosts' lead over Real Madrid to 11 points, was made possible by goals from Andreas Christensen, Robert Lewandowski, Raphinha, and Guido Rodriguez's own goal.

Christensen's goal in the 14th minute, when he headed in a cross from Raphinha, gave Barcelona the lead. The hosts' situation was made simpler by the substitution of Betis defender Edgar Gonzalez for injured Luiz Felipe in the 12th minute. Gonzalez, however, was dismissed 21 minutes later after collecting two cautions for two poor tackles.

Lewandowski and Raphinha each scored once for Barca in the span of three minutes as they took advantage of their numerical advantage. Lewandowski moved to the top of the La Liga goalscoring lists in the 36th minute with his 19th goal of the year. Raphinha then increased the score to 3-0, albeit the goal had to be verified by VAR before it could be declared successful.

Despite slowing down in the second half, Barcelona was still able to increase their lead thanks to an own goal from Guido Rodriguez of Betis in the penalty area. Lamine Yamal, a 15-year-old winger, made his La Liga debut for Barcelona after Xavi Hernandez, the team's coach, brought him on with the match already won.

Following their midweek loss to Rayo Vallecano, which had the potential to derailed their title defence, Barcelona was relieved to receive the victory. With only six games left, the victory also puts the Catalan team in a strong position to win the championship.

Joaquin Sanchez, a veteran player for Betis, played his farewell match at Camp Nou before retiring at the conclusion of the season, therefore the victory was also a bittersweet night for him.

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