Barcelona maintained their perfect start to the season with a 4-1 victory over Levante and reclaimed the top spot in the Primera Division.
Lionel scored a double in the second half as Barcelona eased to a comfortable win, securing three vital points. Last season’s treble winners have kept their place at the top spot in the table, two points ahead of rivals and second placed Real Madrid.
The hosts were made to sweat in the first half of the match as Levante managed to keep the Spanish champions at bay until the break. However, the Catalan club dominated the possession in the first 45 minutes and created numerous chances but sloppy finishing prevented them from opening the scoring.
Marc Bartra broke the deadlock in the 50th minute when he netted a curling pass from Messi with his chest into the near post. Six minutes later, Neymar added the second goal for the home team and Lionel Messi bagged second half double for an experimental side.
Within 11 minutes, Barcelona went 3-0 up after Messi found the net via the penalty spot. The visitors conceded another penalty when Zouhair Feddal tugged Messi’s shirt in the area. This time the Argentine blazed over the bar into the stands behind the goal, missing his second penlaty of the season.
Victor Cassadesus did pull one back for Levante, but they were never really able to threaten their opponents in the remainder of the game. Messi did score again with a drive from the edge of the area a minute from time.
Barcelona manager Luis Enrique rotated his side after the draw with Roma, dropping Andres Iniesta, Jordi Alba, Sergi Roberto and Luis Suarez. The Spaniard brought in Munir El Haddadi, Sandro Ramirez and Marc Bartra as well as Dani Alves returned after a month due to injury. IMAGE/ Susana Vera/ Reuters