Barcelona's preseason is off to a good start, as the Catalan giants beat Celtic FC with an easy 3-1 victory, thanks to goals from Arda Turan, Ambrose (OG) and Munir El-Haddadi, with Leigh Griffiths scoring for Celtic. While the fitness level was still low, the Blaugrana used their supreme talent to overcome a Celtic side with their minds on a key Champions League game next week. Young Barça players got a chance to show their worth, and the big stars are already off to a good start.
With a starting lineup with plenty of young players and a few reserves, the expectations of a great performance weren't high, but the Catalans did just that. From the very beginning, apart from a few mistakes at the back, Barça were great in possession, with the midfield trio doing great work to keep the ball, and had help from Messi to create scoring chances.
After ten minutes and a a great buildup, Aleix Vidal nutmegged his defender in a spectacular way and found Arda Turan outside the box, and the Turkish placed the ball perfectly into the top left corner. The Blaugrana continued to play well and dominate, but a freak goal happened when JA Martínez failed to control an easy pass and Griffiths scored the equalizer. Just a minute later, Juan Cámara played an errant cross into the box, and Efe Ambrose scored an own goal to give Barça the lead again.
More control and good use of possession led to the Catalans' third goal, thanks to a spectacular long pass from Messi to Cámara, who found Suárez in the box, and the Uruguayan then gave an easy tap-in goal to Munir.
At halftime, a good performance overall, a promising game from the midfielders, and a comfortable lead.
With plenty of changes on both teams, the competitive spirit of the first half was gone. Barça's kids from the academy looked to prove themselves to Luis Enrique, but very few chances were created from two inexperienced sides.
In the end, an easy victory, and a promising first half performance. Barça is still a good football team.
Barcelona: Masip (Jose Suárez) | Vidal, Martínez (Borja), Mathieu (Marlon), Cámara (Gumbau) | Roberto (Alfaro), Arda (Aleñá), Denis (Mujica) | Messi (Samper), Suárez (Carbonell), Munir (Nili)
Goals: Arda (11'), Ambrose (OG, 31'), Munir (40')
Celtic: Gordon (Fasan) | Janko (Ralston), Ambrose (McCart), O'Connell (Ajer), Izaguirre (Fisher) | Brown (Allan), Bitton (Rogic), McGregor (Armstrong) | Roberts (Ciftci), Griffiths (Dembele), Forrest (Christie)
Goals: Griffiths (29')