Barcelona extended their La Liga winning run to seven games as Lionel Messi and Francisco Trincao both scored a brace in a 5-1 home win over Alaves
Ronald Koeman gave Trincao his first league start to the season after scoring the benchmark winner against Real Betis last weekend, while 18-year-old Ilaix Moriba also made his debut
The hosts started well and took the lead just before the half hour when Trincao scored his second goal in a week and got a bad result after an Ilaix goal in the region
Barca appeared to have doubled their advantage when Messi converted a rebound from an Antoine Griezmann chance just for VAR to recognize a marginal offside position for the French striker
However, Messi found the net at halftime with a trademarked finish with his left foot from outside the box that hit the inside of the near post, giving Dani Pacheco no chance
Alaves gave himself a lifeline just before the hour and used a loose pass from Ilaix to run through the center of the Barcelona defense Substitute Luis Rioja threw a low shot past Marc-Andre ter Stegen
The fight didn’t last long, however, as Barcelona regained control of the game after scoring two goals in two minutes, first from Trincao and then from Messi
Riqui Puig, Griezmann and Messi were involved in preparing for Barca’s fifth goal, which Junior Firpo scored as the Catalans secured the points it took to get them back to second place in the league, eight points behind Pacemakers Atletico Madrid
This season has been tough for Barcelona The Catalans have struggled for consistency throughout the campaign and are seen by many as being eliminated from the title race before Christmas One area Koeman has been successful in is re-establishing the bond between the first-team of Barcelona and the famous La Masia academy In this match, the Catalans started with five academy products, with Ilaix making his debut Barcelona needed young talent and Koeman did his part to integrate them
Messi made the whole game the climax with a trademark on the inside of the post at the end of the first half, the Argentine had found the back of the net just moments before, just for VAR to write it off, and then the trick in the second half with a similar goal repeated Messi was Barcelona’s main threat man, as it almost always does, and he could have ended this game with more than two games to show what a brilliant performance this was Vintage Messi
Barcelona – Ter Stegen 7, Mingueza 8, De Jong 6, Lenglet 5, Junior 7, Puig 6, Busquets 7, Moriba 7, Trincao 8, Messi 9, Griezmann 8 Subs – Umtiti 5, Pjanic 5, Dest 5, Dembele 4, Pedri 7
Alaves – Pacheco 8, Martin 6, Lejeune 5, Tachi 5, Duarte 5, Edgar 6, Battaglia 6, Pina 5, Cordoba 4, Perez 7, Joselu 5 Subs – Deyverson 3, Laguardia 5, Pons 4, Rioja 7 , Sainz 5
29 ’GOAL! Barcelona 1-0 Alaves: Trincao scored his second goal in a week! Mingueza’s cross from the right caused a problem for Alaves. Ilaix took control of the back post and then prepared Trincao for the shot and the Portuguese striker found the back of the net!
39 ’GOAL COMPLETED! Officials looked at the tape and determined that there is an offside position against Griezmann there, although the reps are not exactly clear where that offside position was Messi’s target is not
45 1 ’GOAL! Barcelona 2-0 Alaves: That was Vintage Messi! What a goal that was! The 33-year-old cut the inside of his left foot, aimed the exertion, then shot a low blow into the back of the net from the inside of the near post! Pacheco couldn’t do anything about it! Wow!
58 ’GOAL! Barcelona 2-1 Alaves: A lifeline for Alaves in this match! Ilaix gave up the ball and that allowed Rioja to run through the center of the Barcelona defense and find the bottom of the net with a calm and serene low finish behind Ter Stegen that was way too easy!
74 ’GOAL! Barcelona 3-1 Alaves: Trincao scored their second goal of the night and Barcelona are sure to have the points! Messi was released, Pacheco is doing the Save, but Trincao was there to get to the back of the empty net! Game is off
75 ’GOAL! Barcelona 4-1 Alaves: Two goals in two minutes! And it’s another classic Messi moment! Mingueza fed the pass to the Argentine, who cut his left foot and shot a punch into the back of the net from just over 20 meters away! The game is definitely over!
At 18 years and 25 days, Ilaix Moriba was the youngest player to register an assist for Barcelona on his La Liga debut
Barcelona, Barcelona v Alavés
World news – GB – Lionel Messi-inspired Barcelona extend the league win to seven games