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SOCCER

FC Barcelona finishes U.S. trip unbeaten

But it takes a second-half goal by Dani Alves to tie Chivas de Guadalajara, 1-1.

August 09, 2009|Associated Press

SAN FRANCISCO — Bojan Krkic scored the tying goal and FC Barcelona completed its U.S. tour unbeaten, tying Chivas de Guadalajara, 1-1, in an international friendly match Saturday night at Candlestick Park.

Chivas captain Ramon Morales put the 11-time Mexican champions on top in the 50th minute, but Krkic tied the score 14 minutes later for FC Barcelona, which beat the Galaxy and Seattle Sounders of Major League Soccer during its week in the United States.

After a first half in which Guadalajara didn't put a shot on goal, Morales broke through by meeting a cross from Xavier Baez and heading it past Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdez.

Barcelona's reserves, eight of whom came on at the half, applied more pressure on Chivas, which was outshot 9-2.

The defending UEFA Champions League title holders got back even when Dani Alves -- one of the few Barcelona starters to play the entire match -- sent a skimming 40-yard cross from the right sideline to the left post, where an open Krkic tapped it home.

Alves almost scored a go-ahead goal two minutes later when he blew past Chivas defender Edgar Mejia and launched a curling shot that glanced off the back post.

Chivas had one final chance to pull out a win when Jesus Padilla stormed past Barcelona captain Carles Puyol in the 88th minute. But after drawing Valdez to the deck, Padilla's left-footed shot from six yards out also hit the post.

Barcelona's starting lineup, featuring superstars Lionel Messi and Thierry Henry, spent the first half dominating ball possession before launching repeated attacks from all angles on Chivas goalkeeper Luis Michel.

Henry had the best scoring chance in the opening period. Sprung free by a pass from Messi in the 29th minute, Henry dribbled in from 15 yards and successfully eluded the charging Michel, but the angle for his right-footed shot was just a little too severe, and it hit the outside of the near post.

The announced attendance of 61,572 at Candlestick Park was the biggest crowd for a soccer match in the San Francisco Bay Area since the semifinals of the 1999 Women's World Cup.

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