Barcelona put on a real show at Camp Nou in the Copa del Rey on Thursday. Ernesto Valverde named a strong team as the two sides went into the game with the tie at 1-1. However Lionel Messi and Jordi Alba were in irresistible form and had the hosts 3-0 up after just 28 minutes. Luis Suarez then got in on the action and Ivan Rakitic put the icing on the cake late on.
After the first leg this game promised to be entertaining and so it proved with a tasty first half. Barca got off to an absolute flyer and were ahead after 13 minutes as Alba crossed for Messi to fire home.
Two minutes later and the duo pretty much repeated the trick as Alba again found Messi and the Argentine fired past goalkeeper Sergio Alvarez.
Barcelona were in total control now and then added a third as Messi came up with a simply ridiculous ball for Alba to slide home and make it 3-0.
Yet there was no let up from Barca as Suarez grabbed a fourth three minutes later to ensure the hosts went in at the break with the tie completely sewn up.
It wasn’t much of a surprise that the second half did not live up to the first and Valverde also made changes sending on Thomas Vermaelen for Gerard Pique at the break. He also decided to give Messi a rest on the hour mark with Ousmane Dembele arriving and Jose Arnaiz following shortly afterwards for Andres Iniesta.
Despite an understandable drop in tempo Barca still had chances with Suarez blasting a chance over, Dembele having a shot blocked and Arnaiz firing into the side-netting.
Yet with time running out they did manage another as Ivan Rakitic headed a Dembele corner home to seal the win and send Barca into the quarter-finals.
Barça: Cillessen; Semedo, Piqué (Vermaelen), Mascherano, Alba; Rakitic, Busquets, Gomes, Iniesta (Arnaiz); Messi (Dembele), Suárez.
Goals: Messi (13), Messi (15), Alba (28), Suarez (31), Rakitic (87)
Celta: Alvarez, Mallo, Sergi Gomez, Fontas, Jonny; Wass, Sanchez, Lobotka, Sisto (Mendez); Aspas (Maxi Gomez), Mor.