Defending LaLiga Champions Barcelona had a scintillating game against Real Betis on Matchday 23. The Catalan giants outscored their opponents and the game ended 3-2 in Barcelona’s favour. Lionel Messi was the star of the match with his amazing performance against Betico.
Lionel Messi registered a hat-trick of assists against Real Betis. In the 5th minute of the match, Nabil Fekir attempted a shot in the Barcelona penalty area, when Clement Lenglet tried to block the shot. After checking with the VAR, the referee confirmed that Lenglet had deliberately used his arms to block the shot and awarded a penalty to Betis. Sergio Canales scored from the spot to give his side the lead in the game.
However, Barcelona defender Frenkie de Jong scored the equaliser just three minutes later when Lionel Messi opened up Betis' defence with a brilliant ball. De Jong scored from a half-volley. Betis midfielder Nabil Fekir, however, was quick to restore the lead in the 26th minute of the game.
Sergio Busquets scored Barcelona’s second goal in the injury time of the first half. Lionel Messi took a freekick and found the ball netted in by Busquets. Clement Lenglet scored Barcelona’s third goal in the 72nd minute to ensure all three points for his side. Lenglet headed the ball into the net after Messi’s cross into the box.
Amid all the controversy surrounding Lionel Messi and Eric Abidal, this performance was an encouraging one for an injury-plagued Barcelona squad. The six-time Ballon d’Or winner has now bagged 15 assists this season along with 19 goals in 26 appearances. Barcelona are placed second on the LaLiga points table, three points behind Real Madrid. Barcelona will next play against Getafe in LaLiga.