FC Barcelona mastered the conditions to emerge victorious against Unai Emery's valiant Sevilla outfit in Andalusia on Sunday evening, regaining control at the top of La Liga with an impressive 4-1 win. In truth, the scoreline flatters a Blaugrana outfit that were far from their best, but like champions, Barça grinded out the win to send a message to the rest of the chasing pack. That message was emphatically delivered by Lionel Messi, who returned to form with two goals and an assist.
If the Argentine can keep this up, only a brave man would bet against Barcelona retaining their title, and quite simply that is why Messi is greatest player in the world. On another night, without Messi to bail them out, Barcelona might have dropped points again. However, with him on the field, they actually end up winning by three goals.
Sevilla only have themselves to blame. Barcelona still haemorrhaged chances, the only thing standing between the hosts and a win was their profligacy in front of goal. From Carlos Bacca to Kevin Gameiro, Sevilla just couldn't find the back of the net and only broke the deadlock thanks to a fortuitous deflection off Alberto Moreno's shot.
And just like that, the crisis was over. A week off top spot seemed like the apocalypse for some Culés. Frantic plans were drawn up to depose Gerardo Martino and sell half the squad, but just a week later the same personell were good enough to escape Andalusia with three points, and a three goal win. Anyone would think they were overreacting to begin with...