Lowly Valladolid shock Barcelona

Lowly Valladolid shock Barcelona

Barc-elona's bid for a fifth La Liga title in six years suffered a surprise setback when the champions crashed to a 1-0 defeat at lowly Real Valladolid on Saturday.

It was one of Barca's worst performances of the season, particularly during a woeful first half when Fausto Rossi scored for the home side in the 17th minute, and they squandered a chance to pull two points clear of Real Madrid at the top.

Barca's players, most of whom were in international action midweek, looked jaded and short on inspiration and Lionel Messi and Neymar wasted a host of opportunities in a generally lethargic display.

Real, who host Barca for the "Clasico" in two weeks, can stretch their lead over their arch-rivals to four points with a win at home to Levante on Sunday.

Atletico Madrid will climb above Barca and draw level on 64 points with Real if they beat Celta Vigo later on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Playmaker Xavi, who has won 22 trophies in 16 glittering seasons with Barcelona, said on Saturday that he would love to take over as head coach one day.
The 34-year-old has made more than 700 appearances for the Catalan club, winning three Champions Leagues and seven La Liga titles since making his debut in August 1998.

Xavi's contract at the Nou Camp expires in 2016 and the Spain midfielder wants to move into management once his playing days are over.

"I'd love to, yes... but that is for the future. Right now I love to play football. When you're a kid playing, you enjoy having the ball don't you? All I ever want to do is have the ball at my feet, bossing the game. I'd like to remain in football forever and it would always have to be with Barcelona. That's where my heart and feelings are,” Xavi told Britain’s Daily Mail.

"I'm Barcelona through and through and have always wanted to stay here," the playmaker said.

Xavi added that suggestions Barcelona were approaching the end of their era of dominance were wide of the mark.