Barcelona one point off Spanish title after derby win

10:22, May 09, 2011      

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Barcelona's David Villa runs for the ball against Espanyol goalkeeper Kameini during their Spanish first division soccer match at Nou Camp stadium in Barcelona May 8, 2011. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)

FC Barcelona will be crowned champions of the Spanish La Liga if they are able to draw away to Levante on Wednesday night after beating local rivals Espanyol 2-0 in the Camp Nou Stadium on Sunday.

In light of Real Madrid's win in Sevilla on Saturday night, it was impossible for Barca to assure the title in front of their own fans this weekend, but Pep Guardiola's side have the incentive of being able to prepare for the Champions League final at the end of the month, to try and assure the crown as soon as possible.

After a tight opening period, Andres Iniesta put Barcelona ahead, taking advantage of an error from young defender Jordi Amat to win the ball, before winning the ball and beating Carlos Kameni with a low shot.

David Villa could have scored his side's second before halftime, but the Spain international shot wide with just Kameni to beat.

Barcelona didn't have to wait long, however, before doubling their lead and it was Gerard Pique who scored with a header after 48 minutes.

Pablo Osvaldo went close on a couple of occasions as Espanyol tried to get back into the game against their neighbors, but on both occasions his shots went straight into the hands of a well positioned Victor Valdes.

As time ran out a party atmosphere began to descend on the stands of the Camp Nou stadium as the Barcelona fans began to celebrate after what has been a fantastic week for the club after they knocked hated rivals Real Madrid out of the Champions League on Tuesday night.

The atmosphere got even better when Eric Abidal came on as a substitute with 20 minutes remaining for his second appearance since undergoing a cancer operation in March.

Abidal and his companions left the pitch to chants of " champions, champions" and if they are not mathematically champions on Sunday, they will be in all certainty on Wednesday.

Source: Xinhua

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