Barcelona's preseason ended on a high on Wednesday, as the Blaugrana blew past Sampdoria to win the Joan Gamper Trophy with an easy, yet narrow 3-2 victory, thanks to goals from Luis Suárez, Lionel Messi (2), with Muriel and Budimir scoring for La Samp. It was a comfortable match thanks to a strong performance from the Catalans, who finalized their preparations for the new campaign in style, and the Camp Nou crowd got to see the world's best team put on a show.
Barça is usually great on Gamper games, and it wasn't different this time. Luis Enrique made a surprising, pleasant lineup selection, with Arda Turan on the left wing, his natural position. The Turkish looked very comfortable and combined well with new signing Lucas Digne, providing good support to Andrés Iniesta on the left side. Sergi Roberto was on the right looking to do the same with Lionel Messi, and Barça were dominant from the start.
Messi was in great form, and after a fantastic lob from Iniesta, Leo literally pulled off a bicycle kick assist to Suárez, who scored the first. A few minutes later, Messi received another beautiful cross, this time from Rakitic, and the Argentine made the keeper look like a fool with a fake shot before finishing with ease for the second. La Samp got back in the game with a great team play that was finished by Muriel.
But Barça regained control of possession, and continued to dominate the actions. Messi then scored one of his now traditional beautiful goals from free-kicks, and the Blaugrana closed out the half with a comfortable lead and an impressive performance.
With so many changes made by both teams, the competitive spirit of the match was lost, as both teams knew who the winner was going to be. But the Blaugrana continued to keep possession and try to score another goal, and both Arda Turan and Denis Suárez came very close, but the woodwork kept the ball from going in.
Sampdoria tried to make things interesting again when Budimir scored the Italians' second goal, but they couldn't create any more big chances, and the game came to an end with a good victory for Barça. Up next, Sevilla in the Spanish SuperCup. That should fun (and tough).
Barcelona: Bravo (Masip (Ter Stegen)) | Roberto (Vidal), Piqué (Umtiti), Mathieu (Mascherano), Digne (Cámara) | Busquets (Samper), Rakitic (Denis), Iniesta (Gomes) | Messi (Munir), Suárez, Arda
Goals: Suárez (16'), Messi (21',33')
Sampdoria: Viviano (Puggioni) | De Silvestri (Pereira), Silvestre, Castan (Skriniar), Regini | Eramo (Barreto), Torreira (Palombo (Ivan)), Linetty (Cigarini) | Schick (Alvarez) | Muriel (Budimir), Quagliarella (Djuricic)
Goals: Muriel (23'), Budimir (77')