Sport

Suarez, Messi On Target As Barcelona Edge Out Alaves

Suarez, Messi On Target As Barcelona Edge Out Alaves”

During his time on the pitch, in which he played in an advanced role alongside Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, Coutinho managed just one shot which was blocked.

It was Messi's 20th league goal of the season.

Nelson Semedo and Lucas Digne come in for Aleix Vidal and Jordi Alba at full back, while Paulinho deputises for Sergio Busquets and Coutinho takes the place of Sergi Roberto.

It was almost 2-0 moments later when Ruben Sobrino lined up an angled shot, but Ter Stegen tipped his effort over the bar. The visitors threatened constantly on counterattacks until Suarez evened the score with a volley from inside the area in the 72nd minute after a cross by Andre Iniesta.

Philippe Coutinho

The equaliser maintained Barca's status as the only unbeaten team in Europe's top five leagues and Messi then gave them a seventh consecutive Liga win by curling a sumptuous free kick beyond the reach of the former Real Madrid keeper in the 84th.

Having completed his much-anticipated move from Liverpool earlier this month, for a fee that could reportedly rise to €160m, Coutinho came off the bench to make his Barca debut against Espanyol in the Copa del Rey on Thursday.

His free-kick wasn't the best he has scored, and owed to the goalkeeper Pacheo whose hand on the ball was weak, but the Argentina worldwide rescued his side when the goal looked like it wasn't going to come.



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