Remarkably, Barcelona have not won at the Anoeta for nine years and have lost five of the last six matches when visiting the Basque club.
The signs were foreboding for the away side, as Real Sociedad came into this match on the back of four straight wins and after the title contenders all won this weekend, Luis Enrique knew breaking the Anoeta curse was imperative.
Real Sociedad started brilliantly and after Willian Jose’s cross found Xabi Pireto, the Spaniard’s header sent Ter Stegan scrambling and he just managed to keep hold of the ball.
Once again Real Sociedad were using the flanks well and after another cross was delivered, the ball found an unmarked Prieto at the far post, who somehow headed the ball horrendously wide.
Carlos Vela continued the attacking onslaught after he was played through on goal, however, the Mexican’s touch took him slightly wide and he dragged his shot agonisingly beyond the far post.
At half-time, Real Sociedad were once again dominating Barcelona at the Anoeta, as the Basque club outclassed their Catalan opponents in all areas of the pitch. Luis Enrique’s side couldn’t even muster a shot on target, and would simply have to improve in the second half.
The home team deservedly took the lead after 52 minutes. Carlos Vela found himself through on goal and after his shot was saved by Ter Stegen, Willian Jose was there to head the ball towards goal. His header should have been cleared on the line by Pique, but the defender got his clearance horribly wrong and volleyed the ball into his own net to send the Anoeta into delirium.
However, Lionel Messi cruelly scored against the run of play after 59 minutes. Neymar performed a silky run down the left wing and then pulled the ball back for Messi who superbly smashed the ball into the far corner to equalise.
The home team thought they had took the lead again when Carlos Vela’s shot struck the bar and seemed to bounce over the line, the rebound was then headed home only to be denied by the linesman’s flag.
Barcelona finally carved out a chance of their own when Denis Suarez danced his way through the Sociedad defense and his shot was only denied by a Sociedad defender on the line.
This draw sees both teams move up the La Liga table, the home team climb to fifth, whilst Barcelona rise to second, six points behind Real Madrid.