BARCELONA extended their lead at the top of La Liga after a goal from Spain international Pedri proved enough to seal victory at home to Getafe.
Xavi’s side were without suspended forwards Robert Lewandowski and Ferran Torres and struggled to put away the relegation-threatened visitors.
But Pedri’s well-worked fifth goal of the season sealed a 14th league win.
The Catalan side opened up a six-point gap over second-placed Real Madrid, who play later on Sunday.
Spain forward Ansu Fati, 20, struggled to fill in for leading goal scorer Lewandowski.
Barcelona’s greatest threat came from out wide, from France’s Ousmane Dembélé and Brazil forward Raphinha.
It was Raphinha – a summer signing from Leeds United – who unlocked the Getafe defence with a sweeping low cross from the left that Pedri side-footed home on the stretch in the 35th-minute.
Germany goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen ensured the Barcelona defence maintained a record of conceding just six goals in the league this season, standing tall to block Borja Mayoral’s shot before the break after the visiting striker had seized on Pedri’s poor attempted back pass.
Getafe, who are 17th in the table, just outside of the relegation zone on goal difference, continued to frustrate their hosts after the break.
Substitute midfielder Franck Kessie had a snap shot saved late in the game and the home side were almost punished in the third minute of stoppage time, but former Real Madrid man Juanmi Latasa planted his free header straight at Ten Stegen.
Barcelona extended their unbeaten run to eight league games and will welcome back Lewandowski and Torres for Wednesday’s Copa del Rey quarter-final at home to Real Sociedad (20:00 GMT).