Barcelona were held to a 2-2 draw by Espanyol in La Liga on Saturday in a rollercoaster match at the RCDE Stadium. Goals from Luis Suarez and Arturo Vidal saw Barca come from behind to lead 2-1. However, Frenkie de Jong was sent off and Wu Lei grabbed an equaliser late on to ensure the points were shared.
Nothing really happened in the first half until David Lopez nodded Espanyol in front after 23 minutes. Marc Roca swung a free-kick into the penalty area for a completely unmarked David Lopez to nod past Neto.
Barcelona really didn’t offer anything going forwards until almost half-time. Lionel Messi directed a header goalwards from a Sergi Roberto cross that was saved by Diego Lopez and then Luis Suarez hit the woodwork with a toe poke.
Ernesto Valverde brought on Arturo Vidal for Ivan Rakitic at the break and Barca were ahead by the hour. Suarez converted Jordi Alba’s cross to make it 1-1 and then crossed for Vidal to head the visitors in front on 59 minutes.
Things then got really interesting when De Jong was sent off after picking up his second yellow of the match for pulling back Jonathan Calleri, leaving Barca to play the last 15 minutes with 10 men.
It was to prove a costly sending off for Barcelona as Wu Lei levelled late on to deny Barca victory and secure a point for Abelardo’s men in their first game under their new manager.
Espanyol: Diego Lopez; Didac, Naldo, Bernardo, Javi Lopez; Darder, David Lopez (Iturraspe), Roca, Gomez (Vargas); Calleri, Melendo (Wu Lei)
Goals: David Lopez (23’), Wu Lei (88’)
Barcelona: Neto; Roberto, Pique, Lenglet, Alba; Rakitic (Vidal), Busquets, De Jong, Messi, Suarez, Griezmann (Semedo).
Goal: Suarez (50’), Vidal (59’)