League leaders Barcelona were capable to keep a win after being ten-men down against Valencia.

With Matchday 24 of the 2022/23 LaLiga Santander season being marked by a unique tribute to a legend of the competition, this was certainly a week to remember. Here’s all you need to know.

FC Barcelona’s defence could set a new record

Key to FC Barcelona’s position atop the LaLiga Santander table has been their defence, with the Catalan outfit keeping yet another clean sheet this past weekend even though they played the final half hour of their 1-0 win over Valencia CF with 10 men. They have let in just eight goals in 24 fixtures, a rate of just 0.33 goals per game. That means Barça could beat the current goals conceded record for a season, which is 0.47 per game.

Gabri Veiga is the Player of the Month for February

The February Player of the Month award has been claimed by RC Celta youngster Gabri Veiga, with the 20-year-old attacking midfielder having scored four goals across the month. His excellent displays showed he is one to watch and they helped the Galician team pick up seven points from a possible 12.

Simeone breaks the record in style

Saturday was going to be a special day for Diego Simeone no matter the result of Atlético de Madrid vs Sevilla FC, as El Cholo managed his 613rd game in charge of Los Colchoneros, meaning he moved past Luis Aragonés to become the club’s all-time leader for matches as coach. But, it was an especially memorable night for Simeone as his team put on a show to defeat Sevilla FC 6-1, with Memphis Depay and Álvaro Morata each scoring a brace.

The Champions League dream is still on for Real Betis

Real Betis started this season dreaming of a top four finish, which would bring Champions League football back to the Estadio Benito Villamarín for the first time since 2005. By winning three in a row and then holding Real Madrid to a 0-0 draw this past weekend, Los Verdiblancos are closing in on fourth-placed Real Sociedad, as they’re now just three points behind the Basque side. The battle between these two clubs over the final months of the season promises to be fascinating.

Real Betis will have to do it without Fekir

There was, however, some sad news at Real Betis this past week, as their star playmaker Nabil Fekir has been ruled out for the remainder of the 2022/23 campaign with an ACL injury. As the Frenchman begins his recovery process, his teammates showed their support by wearing t-shirts with a message of encouragement as they took to the field for the Real Madrid fixture on Sunday.

This was a weekend to make Iribar proud

With legendary goalkeeper José Ángel Iribar celebrating his 80th birthday on March 1st, his former team Athletic Club made a proposal for all LaLiga teams to use a black goalkeeper’s jersey this past weekend. That’s because this was the colour he always wore, and shot-stoppers across the country joined in with this tribute. The 80-year-old would also have been proud by some of the performances, with nine different ‘keepers earning clean sheets across the first nine fixtures of LaLiga Santander’s Matchday 24.

Elche CF aren’t giving up

A footballing miracle will still be required for Elche CF to avoid relegation, but Pablo Machín’s side aren’t giving up and they proved this by securing their second win of the season on Saturday, going away to RCD Mallorca and winning 1-0 via a late Lucas Boyé strike.

Sergi Roberto is staying at FC Barcelona

Sergi Roberto has spent the past 17 years of his life on FC Barcelona’s books and he’ll stay at the Spotify Camp Nou for at least one more, having agreed a contract renewal this past week that’ll run until the summer of 2024.

There’s everything still to play for in the Copa del Rey semi-finals

Four of the oldest and most decorated Spanish clubs were competing in the Copa del Rey semi-finals this past midweek, and a pair of 1-0 scorelines means that both ties are still very much in the balance. CA Osasuna won 1-0 at home against Athletic Club and will look to hold on to that lead in the second leg in Bilbao, while FC Barcelona were able to earn a 1-0 lead of their own when they visited Real Madrid.

Three Real Madrid players make the FIFPRO Men’s World 11

The 2022 FIFPRO Men’s World 11 was revealed this past week and Real Madrid’s Thibaut Courtois, Luka Modrić and Karim Benzema all made it into the line-up of the best players of the year. Their former teammate Casemiro was included too after he helped Los Blancos to last year’s LaLiga Santander and Champions League titles. There was no other club with more representation in the FIFPRO Men’s World 11 than Real Madrid. 

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