Lionel Messi yet again proved why the term ‘downfall’ isn’t suitable for him. A pure showcase of excellence was witnessed when Messi netted his 31st La Liga hat-trick as Barcelona dismantled Levante 2-0 on Sunday and hence gain the 3-point lead at the top of the table.
Barcelona was under pressure especially after Atletico Madrid and Sevilla has graduated themselves to a position leaving Barca behind. But coach Ernesto Valverde has plans for 31-year old Argentinian that were way beyond one’s thoughts. Ernesto thought of restricting Messi few matches just to get him refreshed and charged to get into the field. And the result was a third straight league win without conceding a goal.
A refreshing start to the game by Levante led to an early save by visiting goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen from Ghanaian Emmanuel Boateng.
Soon after the save, Barca moved on and began to pace-up with Messi taking the charge with a curling full from long range before testing Oier Olazabal in the Levante goal with a free-kick.
Barca soon began to burst the hype-bubbles as Messi jinked through a mesmerized home defence and picked out Suarez who volleyed home.
Towards the half-time where the victory had already shifted its base to Barca, Messi bore down on goal two minutes before half-time and drilled low into the net.
“I’m happy to have won here, because last year we came and they put five goals past us having gone the whole season unbeaten, so we knew about the danger of Levante and it was a match we had marked out,” added Valverde.
Messi managed to score only five goals in two league games finishing only fifth in the voting for the Ballon d’Or race.
The 88th minute of the game had Gerard Pique added another goal to the scorecard after a gnetle pass from Messi.