|Barcelona 6-2 Real Betis – Match Report|
FC Barcelona kicked off their La Liga title defence with a fantastic 6-2 win against Real Betis at the Camp Nou with striker Luis Suarez scoring a hat-trick while Lionel Messi dazzled with a brace and Arda Turan got the other goal.
Luis Enrique started Jordi Alba at left back over Lucas Digne and Sergi Roberto expectedly started on the right ahead of Aleix Vidal. Barça were without Andres Iniesta and Neymar and Denis Suarez with Arda Turan taking up their places, and they both did well.
Barcelona were presented with their official La Liga trophy for last season before the game and it didn’t take them much time to get into the lead as they scored the opener as early as the 6th minute through the on-form Arda Turan.
Lionel Messi found Jordi Alba on the left with a trademark devilish diagonal pass before the Spaniard squared the ball to Arda Turan in the middle for the Turkish star to give Barça the lead, continuing his fine form. The goal was his 3rd goal in two games for Barça this season.
It didn’t take too long for the host to reply as they got the equalizer 15 minutes later through the club’s record goalscorer Ruben Castro. The striker fired a powerful free kick to beat Claudio Bravo, who will be playing his final game in a Barça shirt.
Barça began to pile up the pressure on their opponent and Lionel Messi was on fire. The Argentine came close to regaining Barça’s lead few minutes later but his right-footed shot from 12 yards was denied by the crossbar.
Messi didn’t relent whatsoever and he got what he wanted on 37 minutes and it was a beautiful striker. The captain of the night collected the ball outside the box and unleashed a powerful shot mixed with an unreal amount of curl to leave Antonio Adan with no chance, the goalkeeper was beaten well. 2-1 it became.
Adan was beating once again few minutes later but by Luis Suarez this time. Sergi Roberto made a beautiful cut back pass to find the Uruguayan striker who shot first time towards the bottom left hand corner to head Barça into the break with a 3-1 lead.
Barça contained their dominance in the second half and finally got their fourth, Messi directly involved once again. The star started a counter attack before playing a semi one-two with Arda Turan, he then set up Luis Suarez with a mini-square pass to tap into an empty net.
It was like Lionel Messi had a past beef with Real Betis and he just didn’t want to stop. He scored Barça’s 5th goal of the evening on 57 minutes, one minute after Suarez’s strike and one again, it was from outside the box. He collect the ball on the right before firing a bullet from 30 yards to beat Adan.
Luis Suarez grabbed his hat-trick in the 82nd minute after he bent in a magnificent free kick from 25-yards to leave Adan with no chance. Real Betis pulled one back though and it was Ruben Castro once again as he grabbed a late consolation to make it 6-2.
The win means Barça have won each of their previous 8 Liga openers and this result clearly sends a message to rivals Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid.