Luis Suarez's 17th LaLiga goal of the season helped Barcelona return to winning ways with a hard-earned 2-0 win at 10-man Eibar.
On the back of consecutive league draws against Espanyol and Getafe, Barca boss Ernesto Valverde resisted the urge to shuffle his pack and named an XI it would be no surprise to see line up for Tuesday's Champions League match at Chelsea.
It was just as well, with Barca forced to repel wave after wave of attacks from Jose Luis Mendilibar's relentlessly high-pressing side.
Respite arrived courtesy of Suarez's well-taken 16th-minute goal, which was beautifully created by Lionel Messi's left boot.
Messi hit the post after Eibar's Fabian Orellana struck an effort against the crossbar, although the gifted but temperamental Chilean right-winger undermined the hosts' efforts by receiving his third red card in 12 appearances against Barca midway through the second half.
Remarkably, that did not check Eibar's ambition but Jordi Alba was able to seal the points two minutes from time.
Valverde's team have now equalled a club record by going 31 LaLiga games unbeaten and enjoy a 10-point lead at the summit, at least until Atletico Madrid host Athletic Bilbao on Sunday.
Eibar went straight for Barcelona from kick-off, with Jose Angel heading over from Ruben Pena's cross inside the first minute.
The hosts' bold approach left room for the league leaders at the other end and Alba had a shot blocked after Suarez rounded goalkeeper Marko Dmitrovic.
There was still no escaping the fact Mendilibar's men were making the sharper start, with Orellana and Kike Garcia finding room in behind left-back Alba to fire goalwards in quick succession.
It meant the opening goal came both against the run of play and with a touch of genius, as Messi's sumptuous throughball left centre-back Anaitz Arbilla splayed on the turf and Suarez skipped past Dmitrovic more effectively on this occasion to finish.
Eibar were not cowed and lively right winger Orellana unleashed a dipping effort against the bar before Joan Jordan dragged wastefully wide from the edge of the box.
To repeat the theme of his afternoon, the wandering Dmitrovic found himself rounded by Suarez again in the 36th minute and cut the ball back for Messi to rattle the far post.
A deft flick from Pape Diop sent Orellana into space down the right in the 55th minute and Takashi Inui lashed wide from his cutback.
Barcelona were struggling to halt Eibar's rumbling momentum, only for Orellana to foolishly do it for them.
The 32-year-old previously received red cards versus Barca while playing for Xerez and Celta Vigo and, having made a rash lunge on Andres Iniesta inside the opposition penalty area, he punched the ball away in frustration when Diop was punished for a 66th-minute foul on Sergio Busquets and received a second booking for dissent.
Mendilibar was furious, initially it seemed with his player, and continued haranguing the officials before being sent to the stand himself.
His players continued to push in vain despite the deck being stacked against them, ambition that contributed to a game-sealing second.
Philippe Coutinho - who will be cup-tied in midweek - picked out fellow substitute Aleix Vidal with a superb cross-field ball and, although Dmitrovic denied Messi from a cushioned pass into the box, Alba was on hand to slot home.
KEY OPTA STATS
- Luis Suárez has scored in his last five games against Eibar in La Liga (seven goals)
- Lionel Messi is Luis Suárez's top assistant in all competitions for Barcelona (25 assists)
- Jordi Alba has been involved in eight goals in La Liga this season, the most for a defender in the competition (two goals & six assists).
- Barcelona have won their eight La Liga games against Eibar (3.5 goals per game), the only side which have won all their games in La Liga against Eibar alongside Atletico (seven).
- Barcelona have kept 26 clean sheets in 40 games in all competitions this season (65%).
|Mourinho: Professionals care more than the fans|
|Casillas reaches 100 Champions League wins|
|Expansion franchise Cincinnati sign Garza, send Kamara to Rapids|
|Manchester City sign United States goalkeeper Steffen for reported £7m|
|Schalke 1 Lokomotiv Moscow 0: Russians miss chance for Europa League reprieve|
|Galatasaray 2 Porto 3: Terim´s men into Europa League after penalty drama|
|Jackman leaves Dragons role|
|Tottenham boosted as Barcelona bench Messi|
|Mane and Henderson in Liverpool XI to face Napoli|
|Mourinho shoots down question over how to get the best from Pogba|
|Ronaldo to start as Allegri aims to avoid Champions League big guns|
|Odriozola: I´m in love with Benzema, he´s the best number nine in the world|
|Vikings fire OC DeFilippo after loss to Seahawks|
|Marcelino suggests Valencia open to Batshuayi departure|
|Bottas to make rally debut in title-winning M-Sport Ford Fiesta|
|Kovac dismisses Pavard speculation|
|Yaya Toure leaves Olympiacos after just five appearances|
|Riise challenges Liverpool to banish Champions League disappointment against Napoli|
|We rallied around it - Durant on Green confrontation aftermath|
|Valencia ´p****d off´ with Fellaini´s controversial Young Boys winner - Soler|
|More must be done to combat racism at Premier League grounds – Chalobah|
|Napoli will not sack ´big signing´ Ancelotti if they miss Champions League qualification, says De La|
|Guardiola not interested in ´exceptional´ Saul|
|Shai gives Windies hope with thrilling ODI run chase|
|Ten Hag unsure whether to risk Ajax stars against Bayern|
|Erasmus to work with Bulls as Springboks assist Super Rugby sides|
|Paul Gascoigne pleads not guilty to sexual assault|
|Joshua is ´begging´ for unification fight, claims Wilder|
|Silva, Fernandinho add to Guardiola´s injury woes|
|Hosszu storms to 14th gold, Seto smashes Le Clos´ world record|
|Raheem is an incredible human being - Guardiola rallies behind City star Sterling|
|Sexton pens IRFU extension until 2021|
|Ajax boss Ten Hag can do big things, says Bayern chief Rummenigge|
|He´s good at basketball – Kerr running out of superlatives for Curry|
|Green thrilled to make Warriors return in victory over Timberwolves|
|Madrid squad great and humble - Solari responds to Ronaldo|
|Langer unsure what to expect from Perth wicket|
|Fournette subjected to alleged racial abuse in Titans loss - Marrone|
|Better and better - Mbappe hails Neymar link|
|It´s the end of one of the best movies you could ever see - James pays tribute to retiring Wade|
|NASA invites Curry to see moon rocks|
|No plan B for LaLiga Miami game after Barcelona withdrawal|
|Messi´s English haul, Neymar eyes hat-trick record - Champions League in Opta numbers|
|LeBron trumps Wade in last dance, Curry scores 38 points|
|Seahawks secure dominant win over Vikings|
|Iniesta visits Messi and former club Barcelona|
|Drake makes plea for ball thrown into stands after Miami miracle|
|´Toughest pretty boy I´ve ever met´ - Langer dismisses Paine concerns|
|Van Dijk says Liverpool can challenge for double ahead of Napoli decider|
|Hazard: I´ve always loved Real Madrid|
|Yankees interested in Machado, not Harper - Cashman|
|Warriors´ Curry believes moon landing was faked|
|76ers star Butler suffers strained groin|
|Brady: Patriots still have a lot of football to play|
|´No one died´ - Belichick´s message to Patriots after stunning loss|
|Silva lauds Digne after stunning free-kick|
|Aduriz joins Messi, Ramos in LaLiga history books|
|We have a plan - Ravens coach Harbaugh prepared for Flacco return|
|´It´s difficult to accept´ - Gracia calls for introduction of VAR|
|LaLiga press on with overseas match plan despite Barcelona withdrawal|
|PSG open Coupe de France defence at fifth-tier Pontivy|
|Hazard backs Sterling as Neville reveals England star´s Euro 2016 concerns|
|Everton 2 Watford 2: Digne salvages draw with 96th-minute free-kick|
|Barcelona could ´steal´ Kane, says Pochettino|
|Oakland Raiders fire general manager McKenzie|
|Struggling Villarreal appoint Garcia Plaza as Calleja successor|
|Warriors assign Cousins to G League team|
|Barcelona pull out of plan to play LaLiga game in Miami|
|Pochettino to keep an eye on Inter when Spurs face Barcelona|
|Pochettino confirms Walker-Peters set to start against Barcelona|