Lionel Messi and Jonathan Calleri were both on target as Barcelona missed out on the chance to go seven points clear at the top of La Liga after being held to a controversial draw by relegation threatened Las Palmas.
Messi had never scored at the Estadio Gran Canaria but soon corrected that with an exquisitely struck free-kick after 21 minutes. Having already gone close with one curling effort, from almost an identical position, Messi opted for more power with his second free-kick and found the top corner that goalkeeper Leandro Chichizola was supposedly guarding.
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) March 1, 2018
Chichizola was fortunate to go unpunished for a handball outside his area just before the break and Barcelona were further angered by the awarding of a penalty early in the second half, when the ball brushed Lucas Digne’s arm after coming back off the post.
While there may have been confusion over the decision, Jonathan Calleri’s spotkick was decisive. The 24-year-old, still rebuilding his reputation after a failed spell at West Ham, emphatically found the top corner leaving Marc-André ter Stegen no chance.
Barcelona couldn’t find a winner and while the draw maintains the staggering unbeaten run, the lead is now only five points ahead of Sunday’s meeting with second-placed Atlético Madrid.