Barca ease past Celta Vigo to end year top of La Liga

Barca ease past Celta Vigo to end year top of La Liga

Sunday, December 23, 2018 2:35 pm

Barcelona’s Lionel Messi celebrates with Luis Suarez after scoring a goal in a recent La Liga match.  Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge/File Photo

Spanish La Liga champions FC Barcelona ensured they will end the year sitting top of the table by strolling to a comfortable 2-0 win over Celta Vigo on Saturday.

They were inspired by another superb display from Argentina forward Lionel Messi.

Messi played a pivotal role in Ousmane Dembele opening the scoring against the Galicians in the 10th minute, firing a shot at goal.

Celta Vigo’s Ruben Blanco could only parry the ball to the feet of the French forward, who squeezed the rebound through the goalkeeper’s legs.

The Argentine then scored a sixth goal in three La Liga games to stretch his side’s advantage on the stroke of half-time.

He latched onto a pass from Jordi Alba and produced an irresistible finish beyond Blanco just as he entered the area.

Celta Vigo had conceded 18 goals in their previous four visits to the Nou Camp.

Although they fared better in defence this time, they struggled to cause Barca many problems, particularly after top scorer Iago Aspas went off injured early in the second half.

Barca lead the standings on 37 points, three ahead of second-placed Atletico Madrid and six clear of Sevilla who play against Leganes on Sunday.

Real Madrid, who were crowned FIFA Club World Cup champions on Saturday by beating Al Ain 4-1, are eight points back from Barca in fourth place but with a game in hand.(Reuters/NAN)

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