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Xoel Cardenas: The Luis Suarez Show: 3 goals and a Barcelona Win

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In this column, Xoel Càrdenas gives you his take on FC Barcelona's 3-1 win over Eibar on Sunday night. Xoel talks Luis Suarez's hat trick, the Barça defense continuing to struggle, and Javier Mascherano losing his cool.

Hat trick for Luisito
Hat trick for Luisito
David Ramos/Getty Images

BARCELONA — FC Barcelona grabbed another three points and kept pace atop the La Liga table, as El Blaugrana defeated Eibar 3-1 at the Camp Nou on Sunday night.

Eibar got the scoring starting in the 10th minute, as a Marc Bartra mistake led to a quick Eibar attack, and Borja Baston slotted the ball in an open net for the 1-0 score line. Once again, Barcelona had to come back to try and earn points.

Luis Suarez got Barça back in the match in the 21nd minute, as a great pass by Sergio Busquets found Sandro, who then crossed it toward the middle of the box and Suarez headed in the equalizer. Great team play by the Catalans.

Eibar nearly grabbed the lead later on, as sloppy play by Barcelona led to a shot by Keko at net, but Bartra was there to make the save.

Luis Suarez got his brace in the 48th minute, as Neymar found Luis inside the middle of the box, and the Uruguayan slotted it low and in for his second goal of the night.

Suarez got his hat trick in the 85th minute, shortly after Javier Mascherano was sent off for saying a vulgar phrase to an official (you can guess what it was). Neymar sent a lovely pass to Luisito who chested the ball down and put it into the back of the net for his third goal of the match.

FT: FC Barcelona 3-1 Eibar

Xoel's Take

I don't know how many times we can talk about FC Barcelona's defense giving up an opening goal. It's getting old and it's not a goalkeeper problem. Something needs to change and change soon. I don't know if the defense needs a motivational speech from Carles Puyol, but the Barcelona defense needs a kick in the pants.

Luis Suarez was on-point against Eibar. While Neymar Jr. has been the star all season, especially since Lionel Messi has been out with injury, Luis Suarez has been, at times, inconsistent. Suarez's hustle was/is always there, but the finishing was lacking. That changed on Sunday, as Luisito was brilliant. Now, we wait to see if Luis can continue to keep this rhythm going. While I don't expect a hat trick every match (although that would be nice), I am hopeful Suarez has put the poor finishing aside. It was Suarez's second hat trick in his Barcelona career. What better way to celebrate your one-year anniversary with the club than with a hat trick and a win. Grande Luis!

Neymar had another good performance. It feels like we're seeing the Brazilian grow tremendously over the season. Yes, his performances have been under a bigger spotlight since Messi's injury, but Neymar was showing maturity and growth as a footballer with Leo on the pitch. Neymar now has five assists in the last three matches for Barcelona. What will be interesting is too see if Neymar decides to adjust anything in his game when Messi comes back. Neymar has been playing the Messi role since Leo's injury, and when the Argentine comes back, we'll see if Ney decides to change something or change nothing. I'm sure Neymar will adjust some things in the moment, but nothing too dramatic.

Javier Mascherano was given a red card for insulting an official. Early reports stated that "El jefecito" could be suspended up to four matches for his words.

While a four-match suspension might be too severe for some, I'm not going to defend Mascherano too much. Let's be honest, it was plain old stupid by Mascherano to say the phrase he said to the ref. Yes, I know it was in the heat of the moment and so on, but as one of the leaders of the team, I expect better from Javier. I love Masche's intensity and passion; that's one of the traits that make his great. But you have to know your limits and recognize that you could hurt the team with a single moment of losing your cool. Barcelona has had many, many bad calls and non-calls go against them this season, and yes, it must be frustrating for the Barcelona players as it has been for fans. But that doesn't justify a player going too far and using a strong insult toward an official. I know that the saying Masche said is used all of the time by some Argentines, but that's no excuse and frankly, makes for a poor argument. Let's put away our bias and recognize Mascherano made a mistake and deserves some sort of punishment. I hope it's not four matches, but Masche does deserve some punishment. Smarten up, jefe.

It wasn't the prettiest of wins, but it was The Luis Suarez Show, as FC Barcelona got the win. The Copa del Rey now begins. Time to stay healthy, improve on defense and keep the wins coming.