Ousmane Dembele scored the only goal of the game as Barcelona beat Atletico Madrid 1-0 at the Wanda Metropolitano on Sunday.
Xavi Hernandez’s side took advantage of rival Real Madrid’s 2-1 loss to Villarreal on Saturday to take sole possession of first place in LaLiga with 41 points from their first 16 games.
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Ousmane Dembele gave Barcelona a deserved lead just past the 20-minute mark, dispatching an assist from a Gavi with a first-time shot to beat Jan Oblak at his far post.
Atleti grew into the game after conceding and Jose Maria Gimenez’s powerful header just before the half just missed leveling the score as Barca clung to a 1-0 lead at half-time.
France international Dembele left the door open for Atletico after missing two quality chances in the second half to put the game away, but the hosts failed to take advantage.
Two minutes into stoppage time Barca’s Ferran Torres and Atletico’s Stefan Savic were sent off for violent conduct as the visitors held on for the narrow win and a crucial three points.
The result gives Barca a three-point edge over Real Madrid at the top of LaLiga, while Diego Simeone’s Atleti are in fifth place and outside of the Champions League places.