Lamine Yamal saved Barcelona to continue an excellent start to his senior career in Catalunya. He assisted one, could have scored two, and was crucial in Barca's winner as they narrowly beat Villarreal in a chaotic contest on Sunday.
Barca nearly conceded twice early, but were saved by first a neat stop from Marc-Andre ter Stegen and then the offside flag, and they soon capitalised on their opponent's inability to finish. Yamal, the 16-year-old winger entrusted with his second straight start, provided an inch-perfect cross for Gavi — who nodded home at the far post. The second came just three minutes later, with Frenkie de Jong completing a fine team move.
But the home side weren't so easily silenced. Villarreal responded on 26 minutes, Juan Foyth rising to meet Alex Baena's corner with a bullet header. Alex Sorloth then found the equaliser shortly before half-time, peeling off unmarked at the far post to complete a smooth counter-attack.
Villarreal only improved after the break and added a third early in the second period, carving up a vulnerable defence — a sequence that finished with a curled effort from Baena. Barca turned things around, though, as substitute Ferran Torres came off the bench to score in his second straight match before Robert Lewandowski then swung the contest back the other way, sealing a 4-3 win — with Yamal crucial in the build up.
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