Barcelona will finish another weekend as La Liga leaders thanks to a very good 5-2 win over Mallorca at Camp Nou. The Blaugrana treated us to a truly special first half performance with four fantastic goals, then cruised to a victory in the second despite a few shaky defensive moments. Lionel Messi presented his Ballon d’Or to the crowd and scored a hat-trick, which we are now going to call a GOAT-trick on this website. You’re welcome.
From the first minute Barça looked up for it and hungry for a big win, and they had a two-goal lead within the first 17 minutes: first it was Antoine Griezmann who found himself all alone in front of goal after a genius long ball by Marc-André ter Stegen and chipped the keeper for the opener; then Lionel Messi joined the scoring party early with one of his special curling efforts into the top corner.
After the first two goals the Blaugrana did not stop attacking and created big chances thanks to some beautiful passing sequences around the box, and they should have been up a lot more if Luis Suárez had scored on two clear opportunities. Right after Suárez missed his second chance Barça had their one moment of poor concentration and lazy defending, and that was enough for Budimir to make it 2-1 and give Mallorca some life.
Just five minutes later Messi curled another brilliant ball into the top corner for his second and Barça’s third, but the moment of the game came just before halftime: Luis Suárez finally found the back of the net, and he did it by chipping the keeper with a BACKHEEL. Just incredible.
At halftime Barça looked awesome and had the win in the bag, and the second half was all about their ability to keep up the intensity and make this a bigger scoreline.
Barça couldn’t be as intense and hungry as they were in the first half, but they still looked to keep the ball and press high up the pitch to create chances. The best moment early on was a spectacular run and a no-look pass by Frenkie De Jong that Griezmann couldn’t convert, and then Budimir scored his second of the game and Mallorca had some hope with 25 minutes to go.
Mallorca looked a little dangerous after scoring and came close to a third goal on a shot that was deflected and nearly caught Ter Stegen going the wrong way, but the German made the save. Barça woke up after that and amped up the intensity looked for a fifth, and it came with 10 minutes to go with another brilliant finish by Messi that went in off the crossbar.
The final whistle came to end a brilliant first half performance and an acceptable second half as the team managed the game, and Barça are back on top of the table. And the GOAT keeps doing GOAT things.
Oh, and another thing: did Take Kubo play? Was looking for him all game and couldn’t find him.
Barcelona: Ter Stegen; Roberto, Piqué, Lenglet, Firpo; Rakitic (Aleñá 71’), Busquets, De Jong (Vidal 63’); Messi, Suárez, Griezmann (Pérez 85’)
Goals: Griezmann (7’), Messi (17’, 41’, 83’), Suárez (43’)
Mallorca: Reina; Gámez, Valjent, Raillo, Sastre; Febas, Baba (Señé 70’), Sevilla (Cucho 58’), Rodríguez; Budimir (Prats 85’), Kubo
Goals: Budimir (36’, 64’)