Barca prevails on Messi hat trick

Barca prevails on Messi hat trick

Barca prevails on Messi hat trick

Barca made no such mistake as for all their early season off-field problems, Ernesto Valverde's men have taken maximum points from their opening three La Liga games. The Argentinian playmaker then doubled the lead 10 minutes before half-time, and completed his hat-trick just after the hour.

Messi opened the scoring at Camp Nou when he received a pass from Ivan Rakitic in what appeared to be an offside position. The Barcelona faithfuls had 20 minutes to check out their latest talent.

Suarez's trials continued as he looped an attempt on to the roof of the net having been set up by Messi - both forwards jogged back into position wearing rueful smiles.

On the pitch Barcelona have won their opening two games of the season, despite not playing their best football and they can expect Espanyol to again make things hard for them.

However, the 22-year-old custodian could not repeat similar heroics during Barca's next effort on goal, which was fortunate to say the least, as Messi was on hand to simply tuck away his second of the evening following Jordi Alba's squared ball.

After Espanyol forward Pablo Piatti hit the post, Messi made it a treble with a left-footed strike to slot in another pass from Alba.

With four minutes to go Pique rose highest to head in a corner from Rakitic.

- Espanyol have only scored twice in their last nine visits in LaLiga to Camp Nou, conceding 31 goals at an average of 3.44 per game.

Suarez added a fifth in the closing moments, after the ball had been played across the penalty area from the right directly into his path by Dembele.

Barcelona will next turn their attention to the Champions League, where they take on Juventus on Tuesday.

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