Barcelona (Photo Credit: Reuters)

Barcelona (Picture Credit score: Reuters)

La Liga 2019-20: Lionel Messi scored a brace as FC Barcelona crushed Alaves 5-0.

AFP Madrid
Final Up to date: July 20, 2020, 12:20 AM IST

Lionel Messi ought to declare a report seventh La Liga golden boot after scoring twice in a 5-0 win over Alaves on Sunday as Barcelona ended their disappointing season on a extra optimistic note.

Messi’s double takes his league tally to 25 objectives for the season and places him 4 away from Karim Benzema within the race for the ‘Pichichi Trophy’ forward of Actual Madrid’s final sport afterward Sunday towards Leganes.

Ansu Fati, Luis Suarez and Nelson Semedo additionally chipped in for an emphatic victory towards an Alaves facet who appeared off the tempo after guaranteeing survival earlier within the week.

Barca had their destiny confirmed on Thursday too, when defeat to Osasuna handed Actual Madrid the title and introduced scrutiny on all areas of the membership, together with the way forward for Quique Setien as coach.

Messi delivered a stinging evaluation after the sport however Setien stated on Saturday he nonetheless believes Barcelona, at their finest, can win the Champions League subsequent month.

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“Immediately was very totally different,” stated Messi. “We have now taken an necessary step when it comes to angle and dedication and issues can observe on from that. We have now proven we will change.”

Until Benzema runs riot towards Leganes, Messi will end as La Liga’s high scorer for a seventh time, pulling away from Telmo Zarra’s six whereas taking part in for Athletic Bilbao within the forties and fifties.

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This glowing attacking display actually gave a glimpse of what’s potential when Messi, Suarez, Fati and the promising Riqui Puig discover their rhythm however Napoli within the final 16, and doubtlessly Bayern Munich within the quarter-finals, will provide a totally totally different check.

There may very well be health considerations for Setien too. Clement Lenglet hobbled off with what appeared like a groin downside, with Antoine Griezmann and Samuel Umtiti already out injured.

Suspensions for Gerard Pique, Junior Firpo and Ivan Rakitic meant Setien was capable of title solely three outfield gamers on his bench.

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However Setien has more and more been placing his religion in youth and the 20-year-old Puig impressed once more in midfield whereas 21-year-old Ronald Araujo gave a composed, albeit largely unchallenged, efficiency in defence.

Barcelona had been three objectives up earlier than half-time and will have had extra.

They hit the woodwork thrice within the first 15 minutes as Puig and Arturo Vidal each rattled the crossbar earlier than Messi’s curling shot hit the submit.

Fati lastly opened the scoring when Messi’s deflected cross looped as much as the close to submit, the place the 17-year-old was quickest to react.

Suarez spurned a one-on-one after a superb Puig move and Puig was additionally concerned within the second, weaving inside and teeing up Messi to stride by and end.

Vidal went shut with a flicked header from Messi’s cross earlier than Suarez capped an excellent transfer by heading in his 17th league aim after Jordi Alba had volleyed Messi’s move throughout.

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One other Puig by ball simply earlier than the hour allowed Semedo to lash in a fourth, just for Messi to have the final phrase with a wise end on the half-volley.