Barcelona returned to the winning ways in La Liga with a 5-1 victory over Deportivo Leganés on an early Saturday kickoff, thanks to goals from Lionel Messi (2), Luis Suárez, Neymar and Rafinha, with Gabriel scoring for the hosts. The Blaugrana had a tough match against a bold, attacking Leganés side, but Barça were ruthessly efficient and left Madrid with a very important victory.
Luis Enrique made a surprising selection in his starting lineup, dropping Sergi Roberto and starting three center-backs (Piqué, Mascherano, Umtiti). The Blaugrana had a lot of trouble dealing with Leganés' surprising high pressing, and Barça couldn't make any long passing sequences to break down the pressure and find spaces to counter-attack.
After a tough first 10 minutes, the visitors began to pass the ball better, and found the first goal in a fast break led by Luis Suárez, who muscled his defender away and served Messi for the opener. The goal calmed Barça down, and the Blaugranes began to dominate the actions, having more possession and keeping Leganés from creating any real chances. When they lost the ball, the Barça attackers pressured and got it back, and that is how Messi created a chance and then assisted Luis Suárez for Barça's second goal.
Immediately after the goal, Leganés had a glorious chance with Machís, but Ter Stegen and Umtiti saved the Catalans, who kept the ball for the remainder of the half and held on to the clean sheet, and got a third goal when Suárez found himself in front of goal and gave Neymar a tap-in.
At halftime, a very efficient performance and a game-ending 3-0 lead for the Blaugrana.
The second half began with Leganés again pressing high up the pitch, with Barça using the counter-attack to create chances. After a gorgeous pass from Suárez, Neymar was fouled inside the box, and Messi buried the penalty to give the Blaugrana a four-goal lead.
Leganés didn't have any more energy to do anything to hurt Barça, and the Blaugranes ran away with the game. Rafinha Alcântara scored a spectacular goal with a rocket place in the top corner, and the lead was five. Gabriel got one goal for Leganés with a fantastic free-kick, and the hosts deserved a goal for their effort.
In the end, a very good victory against a tough team, and a boost of confidence ahead of a game against Atlético Madrid in four days.
Leganés: Serantes | Díaz, Bustinza, Insua, Medjani (Pérez), Rico | Sastre, Machís (Szymanowski), Gabriel, López (Ramos) | Koné
Goal: Gabriel (80')
Barcelona: Ter Stegen | Mascherano, Piqué, Umtiti | Rafinha, Rakitic (Arda), Iniesta (Denis), Alba | Messi, Suárez (Alcácer), Neymar
Goals: Messi (15', 55'), Suárez (31'), Neymar (44'), Rafinha (64')