Luis Suarez bags brace as Barcelona claim late Rayo Vallecano victory

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Barcelona stunned Rayo Vallecano with two late goals as they claimed a 3-2 comeback victory to extend their lead at the top of LaLiga.

The Spanish champions took an early lead through Luis Suarez but looked to be heading for defeat when efforts from Jose Pozo and Alvaro Garcia either side of half-time turned the game on its head.

Ousmane Dembele equalised with three minutes remaining and then Suarez got his second goal of the game in the final minute to seal a dramatic comeback.

Ernesto Valverde decided to name an unchanged Barcelona side after last weekend’s 5-1 demolition of Real Madrid in El Clasico, with Rafinha once again starting in place of the injured Lionel Messi.

Suarez opened the scoring after 11 minutes, firing home from point-blank range from Jordi Alba’s cutback.

After being caught out with a ball in behind to exploit Alba’s pace, Rayo dropped a little deeper when defending, denying Barcelona space beyond their defensive line.

Valverde’s team were now finding it more difficult to break through the sea of white shirts in front of them as the hosts grew into the match.

Pozo missed a glorious chance to equalise just before the half-hour mark when he poked the ball wide with the goal at his mercy – but Rayo would not have to wait much longer for their goal.

Despite the early setback, Rayo had managed to contain Barcelona after falling behind and a wonderful strike from Pozo got them level after 35 minutes.

A curling cross was not dealt with by the Barcelona backline, allowing Pozo to swing a beautiful strike past Marc-Andre ter Stegen and into the bottom right-hand corner of the net.

Suarez came within inches of restoring the visitors’ lead just before the break, with his first-time shot striking a post.

Cabrera Alberto Garcia did well to deny Rafinha at the start of the second half before Rayo stunned Barcelona by taking the lead through substitute Garcia.

The 26-year-old had been on the field less than a minute when he turned the ball in from close range after Raul de Tomas’ diving header came back off a post.

Barcelona desperately pushed forward as they tried to find a way back into the game but they struggled to create chances.

Suarez came close with a header late on before Dembele equalised with three minutes remaining as he fired a low half-volley straight into the bottom left-hand corner of the net.

Barcelona then won it in the final minute when Suarez popped up at the far post to convert Roberto’s cross, squeezing the ball past Alberto Garcia.

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