Eibar’s brave exploits at the Camp Nou were brutally unrewarded with an awesome display from Leo Messi who went out of control with his 28th La Liga hat-trick as Barcelona recorded an emphatic 6-1 victory over Eibar on Tuesday night.
A visit to the Camp Nou is overwhelming for any side, regardless of the possibility that the hosts came out with the outstanding absences of Luis Suarez who was seated out, and Ousmane Dembele, who underwent a successful surgery on his hamstring.
Barcelona has the squad profundity to replace any position, and 13th place Eibar were positively classed as the underdogs ahead of the tie. Ten minutes into the game and the guests were looking very much the better side with Ernesto Valverde’s team unable to completely assert their dominance.
Partly responsible was Eibar’s high pressure which made it exceptionally troublesome for Barcelona to play. The home side attempted from at an opportune time to play themselves from the back, but the guests came out with the arrangement to smother their initial build-up to guarantee things did not go Barca’s path.
Paulinho and Denis Suarez also netted for the second consecutive game as Barca extended their lead at the top of the League table to seven points over Real Madrid, who have Real Betis on Wednesday.
Messi, who has now scored 39 hat-tricks for his club, has already scored 12 times in only eight games in all competitions this season and has nine out of five leagues outings.
Meanwhile, Barcelona coach heaped praise on Messi on his extraordinary performances
“I don’t know what to say about Messi,” Valverde said in his postgame news conference. “He is one of the most intelligent players I’ve seen on a football pitch. He’s extraordinary. Today we played in a different way, without Luis [Suarez], but Messi is the same wherever you put him.
“From a play where it looks like nothing’s going to happen, he can create something good for us… and bad for the opposition.
“That he scores four goals isn’t news anymore. He’s done this time and again, on many nights and in many games. He repeats it, he repeats it and he repeats it. He loves football, he enjoys it and he never tires of winning.”