Barcelona fails to win against Eibar as Messi watched from the stands

Lionel Messi

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By Our Sports Desk

Ousmane Dembele came off the bench to score an equaliser as EIbar held on for a point against a Barcelona team missing Lionel Messi.

Messi watched on from the stands at the Camp Nou having picked up a knock in Barca’s win over Real Valladolid before Christmas and the Catalans struggled to create much without the Argentine in the side.

The hosts were presented with a golden opportunity to find the net after just eight minutes, though, when VAR was used to spot a foul on Ronald Araujo in the box. Martin Braithwaite, however, put his penalty wide of the target.

Braithwaite looked to have made amends when he swept home a first time finish from a Junior Firpo cross, but VAR showed the Danish striker was ahead of the ball when the pass was made and the goal was ruled out for offside.

Dmitrovic saved from Dembele, who was played clean through by Pedri, seconds before Eibar took a shock lead, with Kike Garcia pinching the ball off Araujo and finishing past Marc-Andre Ter Stegen.

However, Barcelona responded through Dembele, who converted with his right foot after a pass to the back post by Firpo. Philippe Coutinho and Francisco Trincao were introduced as Barca looked for a winner, but Eibar held on for a point that keeps the Catalans in sixth place in La Liga.

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