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Gerard Pique defends celebration after 'special' goal against Espanyol

05 February 2018

Gerard Pique remains unapologetic after hushing Espanyol supporters as he celebrated scoring Barcelona's equaliser in a 1-1 draw at the Cornella-El Prat on Sunday.

Barca fell behind to Gerard Moreno's header midway through the second half, but they preserved their unbeaten status in LaLiga this season as Lionel Messi, introduced off the bench, crossed for Pique to head home with eight minutes to play.

Barcelona's Luis Suarez curled a free-kick narrowly over, although Espanyol thought they had scored in the first minute of the second half when the ball had gone out before Baptistao cut back for Esteban Granero to convert.

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"Celebrating the goal was special after everything that's happened in the last week", the Spain defender is quoted by Sky Sports News as saying after the game.

"Some of the fans here have been directing insults at me and my family for a long time. That is disrespectful. Telling them to be quiet was the least I could do".

While they were last in the Segunda Division in 1994, now spending their 24 consecutive season in the top flight, Espanyol have yet to make a name for themselves, aside from being Barca's noisy neighbours. "I know it hurt them and I used sarcasm to annoy them".

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The centre-back made headlines after a recent Copa del Rey success against Espanyol by referring to the club multiple times as "Espanyol de Cornella" - a suburb of the Barcelona metropolitan area - rather than Espanyol de Barcelona.

"The game was played by us in the first half but with the rain, when the ball started to stop, the field became unsafe".

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"On our passes from defence the ball could get stuck in a puddle and that's why things got hard". "We had a lot of games in January and there are many things ahead of us". "So it's a good draw in the end and we are still unbeaten in the league".

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Gerard Pique defends celebration after 'special' goal against Espanyol