Celta Vigo 0-3 Barcelona: Ansu Fati, Sergi Roberto and an own-goal from Lucas Olaza seal comfortable victory for Ronald Koeman’s 10-men as visitors continue fine start to season
Barcelona sent a message to the rest of La Liga in the wind and rain at Vigo on Thursday night â€“ forget the dramas of pre-season, we are still the team to beat this year.
They ran out 3-0 winners against Celta Vigo despite being reduced to 10-men at the end of the first half.
They had not beaten Celta away in six years but despite the inclement conditions and being a man down the three points never looked in doubt.
Barcelona sealed a comfortable 3-0 victory over Celta Vigo on Thursday night in La Liga
Lionel Messi and Co have enjoyed a fine start to the campaign under new boss Ronald Koeman
Ansu Fati put them in front after 12 minutes when he beat Ivan Villar at his near post after Celta Vigo failed to clear.
Barcelona were dominant with a transformed Philippe Coutinho running things in midfield and Lionel Messi a live-wire in attack but red cards might have shaken their hold on the game.
First Gerard Pique fouled Denis Suarez as he was through on goal and was sent off by Carlos Del Cerro Grande.
The offside flag had been raised against Suarez and so Pique’s card did not count. But having got away with losing one centre back they then lost the other.
Sergi Roberto celebrates after putting the icing on the cake for the visitors in the La Liga clash
Despite going down to 10 men, Barcelona looked comfortable all night against Celta Vigo
Messi celebrates after Lucas Olaza put into his own net as Barcelona went 2-0 up in the rain
Lenglet had already been booked and when he caught Suarez in the neck with an outstretched forearm he was given a second caution.
Celta were not inspired by the man advantage and Barcelona continued to dominate. At times it seemed as if they were the only team playing in the dismal early winter conditions.
Messi tricked his way into the area and when his shot struck full back Lucas Olaza the ball was diverted past Villar for 2-0.
Barcelona centre back Clement Lenglet receives his marching orders just before half-time
Pique then collided with a post and looked as if he might not be able to continue but he limped back on and Barcelona saw out the 90 minutes with more strength and energy than their opponents.
It was striking that in added time it was Barca and not Celta who were chasing another goal and it was right back Sergio Roberto who smashed their third into the roof of the net after Messi had been denied by Villar.
Barcelona were a comical soap opera through the summer. Two games into the season they’ve been seriously impressive. And coach Koeman still has a few more days to make some final adjustments to his squad. Little wonder Messi and his coach were both smiling broadly when the final whistle was blown.
Ansu Fati pictured putting Barcelona 1-0 ahead in the 12th minute before their cruising victory