Mar 29, 2014 at 3pm UK at ​Estadi Cornellà-El Prat
Espanyol
0-1
Barcelona

Stuani (26'), Colotto (35'), Lopez (76'), Sanchez (87'), Lopez (90')
Casilla (84')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Messi (77' pen.)
Busquets (35')

Gerardo Martino hails Lionel Messi

Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi celebrates after scoring during the Spanish league football match against RCD Espanyol on March 29, 2014
© Getty Images
Barcelona boss Gerardo Martino hails Lionel Messi following Saturday's 1-0 win over Espanyol.

Barcelona boss Gerardo Martino has hailed Lionel Messi following Saturday's 1-0 win over Espanyol.

Martino's side struggled to hit top form in the Catalan derby, but a late penalty from the Argentine forward secured all the points for the La Liga champions.

"With Messi on the pitch the story almost always ends the same way," Martino told reporters.

"Winning here is important because it was a derby. You always have to win these matches, so we value the victory very much.

"All of the remaining games are very difficult. They are seven cup finals."

Barcelona are currently one point behind league leaders Atletico Madrid in La Liga.

Barcelona's Brazilian defender Dani Alves celebrates after scoring during the UEFA Champions League round of 16 second leg football match FC Barcelona vs Manchester City at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on March 12, 2014
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Real Madrid11003033
2Barcelona11002023
3Real Sociedad11003213
4EibarEibar11001013
5Leganes11001013
6Levante11001013
7Valencia11001013
8Atletico MadridAtletico10102201
9GironaGirona10102201
10Espanyol10101101
11Sevilla10101101
12Athletic Bilbao10100001
13Getafe10100001
14Celta Vigo100123-10
15AlavesAlaves100101-10
16Las PalmasLas Palmas100101-10
17Malaga100101-10
18Villarreal100101-10
19Real Betis100102-20
20Deportivo La CorunaDeportivo100103-30