Ten minute Barcelona collapse delivers LaLiga title to Real Madrid

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The LaLiga title race is now formally over after Barcelona slumped to a 4-2 loss to Girona, with goals from Artem Dovbyk, Cristian Portu and Miguel Gutierrez handing the title to Carlo Ancelotti and Real Madrid for the first time since 2022.

Barcelona needed to win prolong the wait for glory for Los Blancos and they seemed on track when Andreas Christensen volleyed a sensational effort across the goal into the far corner in the third minute, but their joy turned to ash 60 seconds later when Dovbyk levelled with a close-range header as Girona continued their quest for Champions League soccer.

The Catalonians then had a series of good chances to take the lead before the break with Ilkay Gundogan thundering off the bar, before VAR awarded them a penalty on the stroke of half-time which Robert Lewandowski stepped up to convert for his 17th goal of the season.

Portu, centre, celebrates with Miguel Gutierrez, left, Savio after scoringJoan MonfortAP

But that's as good as it got for Xavi Hernandez's men as they were placed under a siege by the home side in the second half, with the City Group-owned club equalizing through the substitute, Portu. The 31-year-old poked home in the 65th minute after excellent work from Dovbyk, who proved to be a lot to handle up front.

Then just two minutes later, Girona had flipped the game on its head when Gutierrez added to the scoreline after Portu supplied him with the ball before the Spanish left-back's deflected effort left Ter Stegen gawping as his title hopes died in front of him.

Then in the 74th minute, the home crowd at the Estadi Municipal de Montilivi erupted into joy again as Portu rubbed salt in the wound with his second of the contest, and third goal involvement, with an exquisite volley into the bottom-left corner.

Barcelona's Jules KoundeJoan MonfortAP

Impact on the league table

The fourth signalled game over in the title race and the partying can begin in the capital of Spain as Real Madrid seem set to push on for another treble-winning season with the Spanish Super Cup and LaLiga now in the bag, whilst they're 90 minutes away from another Champions League final.

With the second half capitulation, Barcelona not only handed the title to Vinicius Jr. and his posse, but they also slipped down to third in the table, one point behind Girona, with four games to go.

That means the fireworks can start in city 64 miles north of the Catalonian capital as they officially cement their place in LaLiga's top four and 2024/2025's UEFA Champions League in what is a remarkable underdog story for the Spanish soccer minnows.

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