Messi and Suarez both score twice as Barca thrash Real Betis
Real Betis 0 - 5 Barcelona

Messi and Suarez both score twice as Barca thrash Real Betis

21/01/2018

Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez produced a finishing masterclass as Barcelona launched a second-half blitz at Real Betis to extend their lead at the top of the La Liga table to 11 points.

Ivan Rakitic started the ball rolling as the hour-mark approached while Messi and Suarez joined him on the scoresheet within the next 10 minutes.

The Argentina international saved his best for the last 10 minutes, adding a superb individual effort and then setting up Suarez for his second in similar fashion to help Barca claim a sixth successive league win courtesy of a 5-0 romp.

Betis gave as good as they got for long periods, but their hopes of adding to a return of three LaLiga victories in four were dashed in devastating style on a night when Ernesto Valverde's men belatedly found their cutting edge at the Benito Villamarin Stadium.

A tight first half started in promising fashion for the home side as Andres Guardado whistled a left-footed effort just wide of the far post with Barca keeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen at full-stretch.

In a frenetic opening, an off-balance Suarez blazed over with the visitors stepping up the tempo, and keeper Antonio Adan had to make his first save from Rakitic's 27th-minute drive.

With clear-cut chances at a premium, Messi fired into the side-netting from a Suarez pass four minutes later with neither side able to find the required quality in the final third to make the breakthrough.

Messi's fortunes took a turn for the worse two minutes before the break when, as he fell after being hauled to the ground by Fabian Ruiz Pena, the midfielder accidentally caught him in the back of the head with his knee.

Sergio Busquets tried his luck from long range in stoppage time, but once again Adan saved comfortably to ensure the sides remained locked together at half-time.

Betis resumed brightly to put the Catalans under early pressure and Ter Stegen needed two attempts to claim Fabian's 58th-minute shot at his near post, but they fell behind seconds later after Barca mounted a pacy counter-attack.

Suarez's superbly-timed pass on halfway sent Rakitic clear of the Betis rearguard and he drew Adan before slotting the ball underneath him to open the scoring.

It was 2-0 within five minutes when Busquets robbed Fabian and slid the ball into Messi's path for the striker to beat Adan emphatically.

Defender Zouhair Feddal and Suarez were both booked after going head to head following a difference of opinion, but the Uruguay international's mood improved significantly when he volleyed Rakitic's 69th-minute cross into the bottom corner.

The implosion continued with 10 minutes remaining when Feddal surrendered possession to allow Messi to dance his way through the home defence before beating Adan for a second time, and repeated the feat on the stroke of the final whistle to allow Suarez to blast home his second of the game.

Related news

Lionel Messi's super strike not enough as Barcelona draw at Valencia

Lionel Messi's super strike not enough as Barcelona draw at Valencia

Champions Barcelona's domestic strife continued as they were held to a 1-1 draw at Valencia in an absorbing La Liga game on Sunday, with Lionel Messi again coming to their rescue by equalising with an 11th goal in 10 games this season.

Angel Correa strikes as Atletico Madrid hold off Real Betis late

Angel Correa strikes as Atletico Madrid hold off Real Betis late

Atletico Madrid defeated Real Betis 1-0 in a tight game on Sunday through a second-half strike from forward Angel Correa as coach Diego Simeone's substitutions paid off.

Sevilla go top with Celta win, Atletico subs see off Betis

Sevilla go top with Celta win, Atletico subs see off Betis

Sevilla moved provisionally top of La Liga by beating visitors Celta Vigo 2-1 on Sunday for a fourth straight victory that saw them climb above Atletico Madrid, who had led the table for a couple of hours after a 1-0 home win over over Real Betis.

Real Madrid goalless again in shock loss to Alaves

Real Madrid goalless again in shock loss to Alaves

Manu Garcia scored a last-minute winner as Deportivo AlavГ©s beat Real Madrid 1-0 at the Mendizorroza in La Liga.

Real Madrid's Gareth Bale limps off during derby draw with Atletico Madrid

Real Madrid's Gareth Bale limps off during derby draw with Atletico Madrid

Real Madrid missed the chance to go two points clear of Barcelona at the top of La Liga as they drew 0-0 with Atletico Madrid on Saturday in an edgy, but entertaining, local derby in which the outstanding players were the two goalkeepers.

Barcelona held by Athletic Bilbao as Ernesto Valverde defends decision to bench Lionel Messi

Barcelona held by Athletic Bilbao as Ernesto Valverde defends decision to bench Lionel Messi

Barcelona's run of poor form continued following a surprise 1-1 draw at home to Athletic Bilbao on Saturday.

Andre Silva's brace gives Sevilla emphatic win over Real Madrid

Andre Silva's brace gives Sevilla emphatic win over Real Madrid

Real Madrid crashed and burned in a 3-0 defeat at a rampant Sevilla on Wednesday, losing for the first time in La Liga under coach Julen Lopetegui and missing the chance to capitalise on Barcelona's shock 2-1 defeat at Leganes.

Barcelona drop first game of La Liga season in shock defeat to Leganes

Barcelona drop first game of La Liga season in shock defeat to Leganes

La Liga leaders Barcelona slumped to a shock first loss of the season on Wednesday, suffering a 2-1 defeat at struggling Leganes after conceding twice in two second-half minutes as coach Ernesto Valverde's squad rotation backfired.

Atletico Madrid ease to comfortable win over Huesca ahead of weekend derby

Atletico Madrid ease to comfortable win over Huesca ahead of weekend derby

First-half goals from Antoine Griezmann, Thomas Partey and Koke helped a resurgent Atletico Madrid secure a 3-0 home victory over Huesca in La Liga on Tuesday.

RELATED NEWS

Lionel Messi's super strike not enough as Barcelona draw at Valencia
Valencia 1 - 1 Barcelona

Lionel Messi's super strike not enough as Barcelona draw at Valencia

Champions Barcelona's domestic strife continued as they were held to a 1-1 draw at Valencia in an absorbing La Liga game on Sunday, with Lionel Messi again coming to their rescue by equalising with an 11th goal in 10 games this season.

Angel Correa strikes as Atletico Madrid hold off Real Betis late
Atletico Madrid 1 - 0 Real Betis

Angel Correa strikes as Atletico Madrid hold off Real Betis late

Atletico Madrid defeated Real Betis 1-0 in a tight game on Sunday through a second-half strike from forward Angel Correa as coach Diego Simeone's substitutions paid off.

Sevilla go top with Celta win, Atletico subs see off Betis
Sevilla 2 - 1 Celta

Sevilla go top with Celta win, Atletico subs see off Betis

Sevilla moved provisionally top of La Liga by beating visitors Celta Vigo 2-1 on Sunday for a fourth straight victory that saw them climb above Atletico Madrid, who had led the table for a couple of hours after a 1-0 home win over over Real Betis.

Real Madrid goalless again in shock loss to Alaves
Alaves 1 - 0 Real Madrid

Real Madrid goalless again in shock loss to Alaves

Manu Garcia scored a last-minute winner as Deportivo AlavГ©s beat Real Madrid 1-0 at the Mendizorroza in La Liga.

Real Madrid's Gareth Bale limps off during derby draw with Atletico Madrid
Real Madrid 0 - 0 Atletico Madrid

Real Madrid's Gareth Bale limps off during derby draw with Atletico Madrid

Real Madrid missed the chance to go two points clear of Barcelona at the top of La Liga as they drew 0-0 with Atletico Madrid on Saturday in an edgy, but entertaining, local derby in which the outstanding players were the two goalkeepers.

Barcelona held by Athletic Bilbao as Ernesto Valverde defends decision to bench Lionel Messi
Barcelona 1 - 1 Athletic Bilbao

Barcelona held by Athletic Bilbao as Ernesto Valverde defends decision to bench Lionel Messi

Barcelona's run of poor form continued following a surprise 1-1 draw at home to Athletic Bilbao on Saturday.

Andre Silva's brace gives Sevilla emphatic win over Real Madrid
Sevilla 3 - 0 Real Madrid

Andre Silva's brace gives Sevilla emphatic win over Real Madrid

Real Madrid crashed and burned in a 3-0 defeat at a rampant Sevilla on Wednesday, losing for the first time in La Liga under coach Julen Lopetegui and missing the chance to capitalise on Barcelona's shock 2-1 defeat at Leganes.

Barcelona drop first game of La Liga season in shock defeat to Leganes
Leganes 2 - 1 Barcelona

Barcelona drop first game of La Liga season in shock defeat to Leganes

La Liga leaders Barcelona slumped to a shock first loss of the season on Wednesday, suffering a 2-1 defeat at struggling Leganes after conceding twice in two second-half minutes as coach Ernesto Valverde's squad rotation backfired.

Atletico Madrid ease to comfortable win over Huesca ahead of weekend derby
Atletico Madrid 3 - 0 Huesca

Atletico Madrid ease to comfortable win over Huesca ahead of weekend derby

First-half goals from Antoine Griezmann, Thomas Partey and Koke helped a resurgent Atletico Madrid secure a 3-0 home victory over Huesca in La Liga on Tuesday.