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Barcelona was made to wait but eventually eased to a 3-0 win over Alaves in The Catalans opening game of the 2018/2019 La Liga season. It was yet another memorable night for Leo Messi who was captaining the side for the first time in the league, the Argentinian star grabbed two goals, including Barca’s 6,000 La Liga strike.
As expected, the reigning La Liga champions dominated much of the possession and chances in the first half. Ousmane Dembélé, in particular, had two golden chances to give his side the lead, only to be denied by Alaves keeper Fernando Pacheco Flores.
Just after the hour mark, Valverde’s side took the lead with a moment of magic from Messi. After being bundled down just outside the penalty box, Messi stepped up and drilled a low free-kick Barca’s 6,000th goal in La Liga. It was a deserved goal for the Catalans.
Barca rang the changes in the second half in search for a crucial second. It paid off on the 83rd minute when substitute Philippe Coutinho pushed his way into the penalty box, beat an onrushing defender and curled the ball past Fernando Pacheco Flores in the Alaves goal.
Summer signings Arthur & Arturo Vidal came on for late league debuts, but the night belonged to Messi. With two minutes into stoppage time, Suarez picked out Messi in the penalty box and after chesting the ball, it was a smart finish into the bottom left-hand corner to wrap up a routine win for Barca.
Leo Messi at the double. A real captain's performance! 3-0 Barca
Sub Phillipe Coutinho makes it 2-0, game over!
Leo Messi scores in his first competitive game as Barca captain. It's a smart free-kick and Barca's 6,000th goal in La Liga.
Now for Barca. Messi starts (No surprise there) Suarez & Dembele join him in the attack. Summer signings Malcom, Arthur & Arturo Vidal all make it to the bench.
Team News! First up, the visitors! Alaves supply their team-sheet in a sassy video (Ohhh)
Hello! Welcome to the Live Updates of Barcelona Vs Alaves. Will Leo Messi's captaincy start with a victory? More than likely! Anyway, join me for all the live updates from the Nou Camp, including Live Video Goals as they happen! Should be a hoot, or a tedious goal-fest either way... stick around!
Barcelona kick-starts their league campaign as they welcome Alaves to the Nou Camp. After waving goodbye to Andreas Iniesta last season, the armband has been passed to Leo Messi. Will the diminutive playmaker be able to inspire Barca to league glory? On the transfer front, it's been a busy one as Ernesto Valverde looks to add youth to his ranks. The Brazillian duo of Malcom & Arthur have joined the side, whilst experienced midfielder Arturo Vidal has joined as a replacement for Paulinho.
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TV Channel- HD 12
Stadium- Camp Nou, Barcelona