Lionel Messi got here off the bench at halftime to attain two objectives as Barcelona beat 10-man Actual Betis 5-2 on Saturday to finish their four-game winless streak in La Liga.
Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman gave Messi some uncommon relaxation throughout the first half. It was Messi’s first league recreation as an alternative in additional than a 12 months. Assistant coach Alfred Schreuder mentioned earlier than kickoff that Messi “was not recent.”
Ousmane Dembele blasted a shot previous former Barcelona goalkeeper Claudio Bravo to offer the hosts the lead within the 22nd minute.
Betis ahead Antonio Sanabria equalised within the remaining seconds of the primary half that featured 4 clear misses by Barcelona’s struggling ahead Antoine Griezmann, together with a penalty blocked by Bravo.
Messi spent the primary half-tucked in a winter coat and carrying a face masks like different substitutes within the in any other case empty Camp Nou. That each one modified when Messi went on at the beginning of the second half for Ansu Fati and had a decisive influence.
Messi solely wanted 4 minutes to influence the match when he neatly omitted a move to let it run by means of for Griezmann to faucet residence.
Messi continued to point out his playmaking abilities. Deep inside Betis’ space, Messi turned and fed a move to Dembele, whose shot was goal-bound when defender Aissa Mandi blocked it together with his arm. A video overview led to Mandi being proven a purple card for impeding a transparent aim.
Messi stepped up and causally blasted his spot-kick into the highest proper nook to make it Three-1 within the 61st.
Lorenzo Morón obtained one again for Betis within the 73rd after Barcelona’s defence struggled to mark winger Álex Moreno.
However Messi put the outcome past doubt when Sergi Roberto set him up with a fantastic back-heeled move for the Argentina ahead to get his sixth aim in all competitions this season.
Roberto additionally assisted Pedro “Pedri” González within the 90th because the 17-old-year midfielder claimed his first league aim.