Former Real Madrid legend Sergio Ramos’s own goal handed his old enemy Barcelona a narrow 1-0 win over Sevilla on Friday in La Liga, taking the Catalans top of the table.
Veteran centre-back Ramos deflected Lamine Yamal’s header into his own net in the 76th minute to break the deadlock in a tight clash.
The 37-year-old said this week he had planned a special goal celebration if he scored against Barca after his summer return to Spain from Paris Saint-Germain, but putting through his own net was not part of the plan.
“Ramos is a spectacular defender, today he had the misfortune of scoring an own goal but he had a good game,” Barcelona coach Xavi told reporters.
“It was unlucky for him but for us it was good.”
He continued: “Sergio grows in these atmospheres, it’s an unfortunate goal, it hits him and bounces in.”
Barcelona’s victory helped the Catalans overtake Girona at the top of the table, with their neighbours hosting third-place Real Madrid on Saturday.
Xavi’s side were leapfrogged by Girona and Madrid after they drew at Mallorca on Tuesday.
“Tomorrow I have a birthday party, I can’t watch the game, imagine that. I’ll follow it but I can’t watch, it’s a pity – may the best team win,” said Xavi.
“The only thing that we can control was today, we feel good about it, we deserved more goals and we had a great game against a great team.”
Before the game Sevilla caused a stir by announcing their directors would not attend the traditional lunch or sit in the presidential box in protest at Barcelona’s involvement in the refereeing corruption scandal.
The Catalan club and some of their former directors were charged with bribery on Thursday.
Xavi started winger Raphinha in attacking midfield with Lamine Yamal on the flank, looking for more dynamism behind striker Robert Lewandowski.