Messi double boosts Barca

Barcelona were forced to work hard before Lionel Messi's second-half double earned them a 2-1 victory at Levante on Saturday night.

Last Updated: 15/04/12 at 07:52 Post Comment

Barcelona: Celebrate at Levante

Barcelona: Celebrate at Levante

More of the games that matter

2 years free Sky Broadband Unlimited for Sky Sports customers

Jose Barkero gave Levante the lead with a 23rd-minute penalty and Barca appeared to be making heavy weather of getting back on terms.

But Messi burst into life with two goals in nine minutes, the second a spot-kick of his own, to turn the game around.

Pedro's early cross-shot was beaten away by keeper Gustavo Munua and Thiago Alcantara should have done better than head Alexis Sanchez's cross wide from six yards.

Pedro Lopez made a vital block to prevent Thiago getting a shot away moments later and Munua fielded Adriano's ambitious effort.

The unmarked Thiago wasted another heading chance when he directed his flicked effort straight at Munua before Levante took a shock lead against the run of play.

After Barca failed to deal with a corner, Pedro Lopez headed straight at Sergio Busquets who was adjudged to have handled the ball. Busquets was booked before Barkero calmly tucked away the penalty.

Munua held Cesc Fabregas' downward header but Levante could have had a second in the 38th minute. Adriano collided with winger Valdo and, as both players crashed to the ground, full-back Pedro Lopez ran clear but dragged his shot wide. Referee Jose Antonio Teixeira, having played advantage, then booked Adriano.

The hosts had another chance on the break seven minutes after half-time when Arouna Kone broke away and found Barkero but his return pass was cleared by Carles Puyol.

Munua made an excellent diving save from Adriano but Javier Mascherano had to be alert at the other end after Roberto Botelho dribbled out of defence and almost sent the dangerous Kone through.

But after their impressive start to the second period, Levante were pegged back when the hitherto quiet Messi curled home a precise finish from the edge of the penalty area.

The Argentina star then sent a free-kick over the bar after being fouled by Vicente Iborra, but he was soon given his chance from the spot.

Botelho pushed substitute Isaac Cuenca to the ground in the box and Teixeira initially did not point to the spot, only to be convinced otherwise by his assistant.

Levante's lengthy protests, which may have been sparked more by the manner of arriving at the decision, saw full-back Juanfran booked before Messi powered an unstoppable penalty into the top right corner.

Levante threw Abdulkader Ghezzal on as a second striker but it was Barca substitute Andres Iniesta who was unlucky to be denied another penalty when he was impeded by Sergio Ballesteros.

Ghezzal headed over in stoppage time before Victor Valdes held former Barca player Xavi Torres' low long-range strike.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

More Match Results

Monday, 20 October 2014
19:45
Sociedad 1-2 Getafe Report
Sunday, 19 October 2014
20:00
Villarreal 2-0 Almeria  
18:00
Elche 0-2 Sevilla  
16:00
Deportivo 3-0 Valencia  
11:00
A Madrid 2-0 Espanyol  
Saturday, 18 October 2014
21:00
Cordoba 1-2 Malaga  
19:00
Barcelona 3-0 Eibar  
17:00
Ath Bilbao 1-1 Celta Vigo  
15:00
Levante 0-5 R Madrid  
Friday, 17 October 2014
20:00
Granada 0-1 R Vallecano  

Spanish Primera BBVA

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Barcelona 8 22 22
2 Sevilla 8 7 19
3 R Madrid 8 21 18
4 Valencia 8 10 17
5 A Madrid 8 7 17
6 Villarreal 8 5 14
7 Celta Vigo 8 2 13
8 Malaga 8 -1 12
9 R Vallecano 8 -1 11
10 Getafe 8 -6 10
11 Espanyol 8 -1 9
12 Eibar 8 -2 9
13 Almeria 8 -2 9
14 Granada 8 -7 8
15 Deportivo 8 -8 7
16 Sociedad 8 -4 5
17 Ath Bilbao 8 -7 5
18 Elche 8 -11 5
19 Levante 8 -21 5
20 Cordoba 8 -8 4

Updated Mon, 20 Oct 2014

Footer 365

Chelsea: Eden Hazard one of the best attacking players around, says Ronald Koeman

Ronald Koeman says Chelsea's Eden Hazard is becoming one of the best attacking players in Europe.

Shakhtar Donetsk striker Luiz Adriano claims he was racially abused during win over BATE Borisov

Luiz Adriano claims he was racially abused during Shakhtar Donestk’s 7-0 Champions League win at BATE Borisov.

Sky Bet League One: Bristol City held, by Bradford City Peterborough lose at Crewe

Bristol City were held by Bradford, but the 2-2 draw saw the Robins set a new club record for league games unbeaten.

Mail Box

Are There Any Happy Fans Out There?

It seems as if Chelsea, West Ham and Southampton are the only content supporters right now. We have more doom and gloom for you. Who wants good news, eh..?

Is Van Gaal Just A Dutch Pardew?

A Mailbox of comparisons. Van Gaal is similar to Pardew, Wenger to Moyes, Van Persie to a spent force, and Pelle to a bloody gent. There's also plenty from last night...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property