Result: Real Zaragoza 1-4 Barcelona

Cesc Fabregas, Lionel Messi
© PA Photos
Barcelona move to within three points of La Liga leaders Real Madrid with a 4-1 win at Real Zaragoza.

Barcelona have moved to within three points of La Liga leaders Real Madrid with a 4-1 win at Real Zaragoza.

The hosts could have taken the lead after 24 minutes when Barca goalkeeper Victor Valdes brought down Angel Lafita for a penalty. However, Valdes was able to get down to low to save Carlos Aranda's spot kick and keep the scores level.

Zaragoza made the breakthrough six minutes later when Aranda inventively headed in the rebound after Valdes had saved the striker's initial shot with his legs.

The visitors pulled themselves level on 36 minutes thanks to Carles Puyol's finish after goalkeeper Roberto Gago had flapped from a corner.

Barca took the lead soon after as Lionel Messi lashed the ball home after a quick counter-attack.

Zaragoza were reduced to 10 men before the break when Abraham Minero picked up his second yellow card for a trip on Alexis Sanchez.

Despite being kept at bay for large spells of the second half, Barcelona stretched their lead with five minutes to play as Messi converted from the spot following Javier Paredes's foul on Sanchez.

Pep Guardiola's side sealed the win in the second minute of injury time when Messi played in Pedro with a chipped pass to allow the midfielder to fire in.

Related Video
International Friendlies
Under-21 Friendlies
A-League
8.40am
Melbourne Victory
vs
Central Coast
Tables
TeamPGDPTS
1Barcelona286368
2Real Madrid285264
3Valencia283060
4Atletico Madrid283059
5Sevilla281855
6Villarreal281749
7Malaga28044
8Athletic Bilbao28-639
9Real Sociedad28-436
10Celta Vigo28-235
11Rayo Vallecano28-1735
12Espanyol28-534
13Getafe28-1529
14Eibar28-1228
15Elche28-2927
16Deportivo La Coruna28-2126
17Almeria28-1925
18Levante28-2925
19Granada28-2523
20Cordoba28-2618