Aubameyang opens Barca account with hat-trick
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored his first goals for Barcelona with a hat-trick as they extended their unbeaten streak in La Liga to nine games with a win over Valencia.
Aubameyang, who arrived from Arsenal on a free transfer on February 2, scored in his first start in the league.
Despite a VAR check for offside, Frenkie de Jong added a second and Aubameyang scored from close range to make it 3-0. After the break, Carlos Soler pulled one back for Valencia before Aubameyang scored a lucky third.
Pedri, a substitute, thought to have scored Barcelona’s fourth goal, but his powerful 25-yard attempt was deflected off Aubameyang’s back on its way in. The goal was first assigned to 19-year-old Pedri, but was then given to Aubameyang.
He could have added a fourth goal late in the game when a pass came into his path in the box, but home keeper Giorgi Mamardashvili denied the 32-year-old.
Barcelona manager Xavi will be pleased with his team’s performance, which extended their unbeaten run in the league to four games, dating back to December 4th.
Their three shots in the first half resulted in three goals, as Valencia punished for a sluggish 15-minute run in which Barcelona’s fast passing clicked.
Valencia, which has now gone seven games without a league win, believed they had made it 3-1 before the interval, but Soler was disallowed, with VAR ruling out a goal in La Liga for the first time ever because the ball had gone out of play for a throw in.
After halftime, Soler scored with a diving header, but Aubameyang’s deflected third put an end to any comeback chances.