The Spanish defender played his last professional game, ending his glorious spell at Camp Nou.
Barcelona defeated Almeria 2-0 in their La Liga game on Saturday. An easy home win marked Gerard Pique’s last professional match as a player.
Camp Nou gets emotional
Unlike Barcelona’s recent matches, Xavi started Pique against Almeria, pairing him up with Marcos Alonso at the heart of his side’s backline.
The Catalans started the game on a brilliant note, comfortably controlling the possession.
Following a handball inside Almeria’s box, Xavi’s men had a golden opportunity to break the deadlock in the seventh minute.
But Robert Lewandowski hit the outside of the post, failing to convert the spot-kick. Almeria looked dangerous towards the end of the first period, forcing Marc-Andre ter Stegen into making a few decent saves.
However, Barca regained control as soon as the second period started. Ousmane Dembele converted an assist from Sergio Busquets to open the scoring in the 48th minute.
The Catalans then doubled down on their attacks, securing the victory through Frenkie de Jong 14 minutes later. The Dutchman volleyed home a blocked shot from Fati to double his side’s lead.
Xavi then substituted Pique with Andreas Christensen, which saw the defender take a moment with all of his teammates before leaving the pitch.
The former Spain international gave the captain’s armband to Jordi Alba while he received a standing ovation from the Camp Nou crowd.
The victory sends Barcelona to the top of the table as they await Real Madrid’s upcoming match against Rayo Vallecano to see if they can stay there.
Barcelona: Ter Stegen (7); Baldé (7), Pique (7), Alonso (7), Alba (8); Pedri (8), Busquets (7), De Jong (8); Dembélé (7), Lewandowski (6), Torres (7).
Bench: Christensen (6), Gavi (7), Raphinha (7), Fati (6).
Almeria: Martínez (8); Mendes (4), Kaiky (7), Ely (6), Brandariz (6), Akieme (5); Robertone (6), Melero (6), Costa (5); Leo Baptistao (6), Ramazani (5).
Bench: Babic (5), Eguaras (5), Portillo (6), Puigmal (7), Sousa (6).