Real Valladolid 0-1 Barcelona: Vidal goal keeps alive Barca title hopes

Barcelona’s Arturo Vidal has the best shot conversion rate of anyone to take 20 or more shot in La Liga this season

Barcelona moved within a point of leaders Real Madrid at the top of La Liga with a narrow win at Real Valladolid.

Arturo Vidal scored the only goal, with a low effort into the bottom left corner from Lionel Messi’s pass.

The hosts had chances to level but were denied by poor finishing and Barca goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen.

Madrid, who have a game in hand, travel to Granada in their next game on Monday.

Had Barcelona failed to win, Zinedine Zidane’s side would have had the opportunity to clinch the title in their next fixture. As it stands, Real are a point clear with the advantage of a better head-to-head record.

Head coach Quique Setien surprisingly omitted Luis Suarez from his starting XI in favour of 20-year-old midfielder Riqui Puig.

And while Barca started brightly and dominated possession, they and Messi faded as the game wore on.

While the Argentine was kept relatively quiet, he did bring up another notable milestone, becoming the first La Liga player to contribute 20 assists in a season since his former team-mate Xavi, in 2008-09.