Messi scores first goal of season as Barca run riot against Sevilla

MADRID: Lionel Messi has ended his mini-scoring drought as Barcelona find their winning stride.

Messi curled a left-footed free kick over the wall and into the net for his first goal of the season to wrap up Barca’s 4-0 win over Sevilla in La Liga on Sunday.

The football great thrust his finger in the air before pumping his fist in celebration after scoring in the 78th minute. Messi had gone scoreless in his previous four appearances after being sidelined for five games with injuries.

Messi’s 37th goal in 38 career meetings with Sevilla was also his first since he won his record sixth FIFA player of the year award last month.

“We know how important Leo is for this team and what he means to us,” Barcelona midfielder Arturo Vidal said. “If he is playing well it helps us a lot.”

Luis Suarez put Barca on the winning path for a second time this week after netting with a bicycle kick in the 27th despite Sevilla having dominated the game before then. On Wednesday, the Uruguay striker had sparked a 2-1 comeback over Inter Milan in the Champions League with a superb volley before he added a fine second goal.

Vidal then finished a superb passing move that involved all 11 Barca players and Ousmane Dembele powered through to make it three in the next 10 minutes to turn what had been a tightly contested start into a demolition.

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